Hautetalk: Who Asked Harbhajan Singh For Sexist Commentary On Anushka Sharma, Athiya Shetty’s Knowledge Of Cricket?

Shame on you, sir!

Former cricketer Harbhajan Singh is currently being dragged online over his sexist remark about Anushka Sharma and Athiya Shetty during the India Vs Australia World Cup Final. During the World Cup Final at the time of the 106th over when KL Rahul and Virat Kohli were batting, the camera panned towards Anushka Sharma and Athiya Shetty who were engaged in a conversation while watching the match at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad. In the Hindi commentary, Harbhajan Singh was heard saying that he was thinking about whether the actresses are talking about cricket or film because he’s not sure how much knowledge the ladies have about cricket. It’s shameful that a cricketer despite knowing the way the wives of cricketers are time and again trolled, decided to make a misogynistic remark about their understanding of cricket on national television at the time when the whole country was watching. Way to go, Bhajji!

Did Harbhajan Singh Think It Was Funny?

From the sound of it, it seemed like Harbhajan Singh’s commentary on Anushka Sharma and Athiya Shetty’s knowledge of cricket was a weak attempt at a joke which was unfunny and distasteful. If only the man knew. It was disrespectful for him to question their intellect and understanding of cricket under the guise of a joke. Bhajji’s comment led to severe social media backlash that he continues to be unaffected by. Internet users took to X (formerly Twitter) to call out the former cricketer for passing a sexist remark on the actresses.

It goes without saying that his comment was in poor taste and makes us wonder if he’s really someone who should be doing commentary on national television in the first place. This outrage over Harbhajan Singh’s rather sexist and distasteful comment on Anushka Sharma and Athiya Shetty has left me wondering if the former cricketer forgot that his job was to comment on cricket and not on cricketers’ wives. Sir Ji, who asked for your commentary on the actresses and their knowledge of the game? Tumko puch kisi ne? Did anyone ask for your gyaan ke moti on Anushka Sharma and Athiya Shetty’s understanding of the game? Can someone please read out his job description to him once again?

Having said that, it’s very important to understand that Harbhajan Singh’s comments on Anushka Sharma and Athiya Shetty come from a place of patriarchal conditioning. The conditioning teaches men that 1. women are not smart enough to understand sports 2. women are supposed to be feminine and sports are masculine so they cannot be truly interested enough to know about it. All this is made much worse due to the preconceived notion that actors are not the smartest people on the planet. But that’s precisely what we’re fighting! One would expect a man who is married to an actress to have high regard for the profession and for women in general but clearly, we’re wrong here.

Also Read: Twitter Schools Harbhajan Singh Over Sexist Remark On Anushka Sharma, Athiya Shetty. Not Sporty Behaviour, Bhajji!

Why Are We Dragging Geeta Basra Into This?

Now, the one thing that I noticed was that several people pointed out that the former cricketer and sports commentator is married to an actress himself. However ironic this situation might be, this just goes to prove that Maa, behen, biwi hone ka matlab ye nahi hai that the man will stop being a misogynist. That didn’t help his case and it only goes to show how much he respects his wife, other women and their professions. It’s shameful that a man married to an actress has no regard and respect for her profession whatsoever but as sad as we feel about it, it’s best to avoid dragging another woman into it. We don’t want trolls attacking Geeta Basra for what her husband said, let the man be held responsible please.

Why Do Men Gatekeep Sports Fandom?

Another thing to note is that this isn’t the first time that women’s knowledge and understanding of a sport has been questioned and it sure won’t be the last. Women have broken the gender stereotype by playing the same sports as men but that hasn’t changed how men look at women in sports and their knowledge of it. The gender inequality in sports continues to kill the sportsman spirit. Men, for the longest time, have believed that they’re true fans of sports and know the most about it and any woman who claims to know more is subjected to interrogation to prove their fandom! They gatekeep sports fandom and knowledge and are uncomfortable with a woman in all her femininity knowing about sports that seem to be exclusive to men and exclude women.

Also Read: ‘Hautesteppers 3.0’: Mayanti Langer Says People Focused More On The Length Of Her Skirt Than The Extent Of Her Work

Simply because sports are considered ‘masculine’ by the patriarchal society doesn’t mean that a woman cannot know or understand it and why should women prove their fandom or understanding of a game simply because men (with their huge but fragile ego) cannot accept that a woman can know something which is supposedly masculine. If women can play sports, why can’t they understand it? Also, did no one tell Harbhajan Singh that no one is interested in his sexist commentary on women?

Erm, Can Someone Remind Him Anushka Sharma Is Starring In Chakda ‘Xpress?

FYI, Anushka Sharma will be seen in Chakda ‘Xpress which follows the story of a female cricket player and her battle with misogyny and gender inequality in sports. Clearly, our Indian sports commentators need to be sensitised to ensure that they do not put a foot in their mouths.

Internet is outraged and demanding Bhajji apologise for his commentary or be removed from his role as a Hindi commentator and I’m finding it hard to disagree. This person is a grown man who has witnessed how women are trolled and treated with disrespect for simply being married to a sportsman and yet he has managed to make a sexist comment on Anushka Sharma and Athiya Shetty.

Also Read: ‘Hautesteppers 3.0′ Ep7: Mayanti Langer Reveals Trolls Asked Her To Commit Suicide After Her Husband’s Bad Performance On Field

To make matters worse, it’s not just the wives and daughters of players who are believed to lack knowledge of sports but also the sports presenters who suffer gender inequality. Several sports presenters have time and again spoken about how they are sexualised and their clothes are focused on rather than their work and knowledge. In an exclusive chat with Hauterrfly, sports presenter Mayanti Langer spoke about gender inequality and sexism that she faced as a woman in sports.

Internet Can’t Deal With Monday Blues After Men In Blue Lose Ind Vs Aus World Cup Final. We Want A Day Off From Work Too!

Janvi Manchanda

​​She uses her pen to slice through patriarchy. She could be Geet one day, Wednesday Addams next. Writing is the bane of her existence and the object of all her desires!

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