Sanjay Manjrekar is missing from the elite commentator panel for IPL 2020 after several of his comments turned out to be controversial last year. IPL 2020 will be finally getting underway after a long wait on September 19. Two of the most successful teams, Mumbai Indians (MI) and Chennai Super Kings (CSK), are set to lock horns in the opening game as the whole tournament will be played behind closed doors.
Amidst all the excitement around the IPL, there is the absence of former India cricketer and commentator Sanjay Manjrekar. He has been axed by the BCCI for the upcoming season after several of his comments turned out to be controversial last year.
Sanjay Manjrekar called Ravindra Jadeja ‘bits and pieces’ player which didn’t go down well with the player and fans while his on-air serious banter with Harsha Bhogle also attracted severe criticism.
Sanjay Manjrekar Requested BCCI To Reinstate Him In Commentary Panel
Sanjay Manjrekar had written multiple letters and emails requesting the BCCI to reinstate him in the commentary panel besides stating that he will work according to the board’s guidelines. But even then, he wasn’t picked and has been left out of the IPL coverage this time. When asked about the matter, Sanjay Manjrekar refused to comment and cleared that he is working with multiple media houses during the tournament.
“It is better I don’t comment on that. I will be working full-time with ESPNCricinfo for their pre-match and post-match shows. I am also in the final stages of discussions with a news channel and will be in-house expert for a fantasy league platform. I will also be writing columns plus doing updates for an FM radio station,” Sanjay Manjrekar said while speaking to Moneycontrol.
He claims the reason behind his snub is the fact that in India English is not even the ‘second language’ and hence at times he is ‘misunderstood’.
Sanjay Manjrekar Clarified He Was Misunderstood For Comments For Ravindra Jadeja As Indians Are Sensitive To Criticism
Sanjay Manjrekar also clarified that he was completely misunderstood for his ‘bits and pieces’ comment for all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja.
He also cited England captain turned commentator Nasser Hussain‘s example when the former England cricketer had called Indian players ‘donkeys on the field’ which created controversy to explain how the English language is often misunderstood and urged that the same has happened with him.
“We, Indians, are very sensitive to criticism. The other problem is that English as a language is often misunderstood. A lot of the terms I tend to use are misunderstood. For example, when I had said that ‘Tendulkar-related’ issues are like the elephant in the room.
“People thought I was calling him a ‘white elephant’. In the case of ‘bits and pieces’, people thought it was the degradation of a player. So, if I would have said ‘non-specialist’, then I don’t think there would have had been a furore.
“Once Naseer Hussain had called some Indian players ‘donkeys on the field’, which is a normal English term for people who move slowly and there was a big controversy. So, that is one of the problems in making observations in English and assuming that everyone knows,” the 55-year-old Hussain added.
Sanjay Manjrekar found himself on the firing line when he referred to Indian all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja as a ‘bits and pieces’ cricketer during the 2019 Cricket World Cup in England following which he faced backlash on social media too.