Four days after Ritika Sajdeh made headlines when she quashed Mumbai Indians head coach Mark Boucher‘s justification of removing Rohit Sharma as the captain, the Indian skipper responded on social media with a post that deepened the controversy surrounding the IPL franchise. Rohit was removed as the captain of the Mumbai team last December, and Hardik Pandya, who was roped in by the management in late November via trade with Gujarat Titans, was named the new leader.
Mumbai Indians’ decision to replace Rohit did not sit well with the fans, given his stellar record with the franchise in IPL since taking over the role from Australia legend Ricky Ponting in 2013. In 10 seasons thus far, MI lifted the title five times, the most by any team during the period, while Rohit himself has the best win-loss record as a captain, bettering the great MS Dhoni of Chennai Super Kings.
However, Boucher, speaking on SmashSports podcast, explained the reason behind the captaincy call as a pure “cricketing decision,” while also mentioning Rohit’s dwindling returns with the bat in the last few IPL seasons.
Unimpressed with the logic, Rohit’s wife Ritika wrote: “So many things wrong with this,” in the comments section of the SmashSports podcast on Instagram.
Reacting for the first time since Ritika’s post, Rohit shared a picture of his wife on his social-media handle and captioned it: “Always by my side @ritssajdeh.”
While on any other day, the caption would have gone unnoticed by fans, who would have hit the like button like any other random 1217 of his posts, Rohit’s words in his Instagram post sparked speculations among fans.
Most fans responded to the post saying, “Those who know the reason behind this post,” while few others said, “The caption said it all.”
What was Mark Boucher’s justification?
The MI head coach has been keen on wanting Rohit, the batter, to bounce back and hence felt that taking off captaincy duties might lessen the burden on him.
“It’s just more of a cricketing decision that was made and I do think it is going to bring the best out of Rohit as a person as a player. Just let him go out and enjoy and score some good runs. He’s been captaining for ages and he’s done really well for Mumbai Indians. Now he also leads India as well. It is that he walks into a place and there’s just cameras in it and he’s so busy and he hasn’t had probably the best couple of seasons of late with the bat but he’s done well as a captain,” Boucher had said.