The thing is, what you read is, for me, a fact, and maybe that can be denied from your side, but currently, many of the Indian Cricket Team fans are toxic, diplomats and player favourites only. I am not saying that having a particular favourite player from a team is a bad thing. Still, the thing is comparing him to every player and cussing their fans, cussing other players and their families is where I feel that ICT fans are No. 1. The thing is I have seen social media change through these things as when I saw all these things started, was in 2019 after the World Cup.
At that time, Rape threats were given to Dhoni and Kedar Jadhav’s daughters and threats to the families of Rohit and Kohli. Also, many of the fans being toxic are diplomats as I saw an account on Instagram where the person when we lost the series against West Indies, that account posted a story like, ”We all know that Indian Team is nothing without Kohli/Rohit and they can never be.” The same account yesterday was hailing Hardik and Ishan’s knock but was cussing Rohit and Kohli for getting out early and saying, “Imagine we made 250+ without Rohit and Kohli. This much stronger we are! Proud to be Indian!” The problem is, suddenly, they all turn into the colour of patriotism when their favourite players don’t perform well.
Also, I remember one incident of IPL 2023 only where the last group stage match happened between Royal Challengers Bangalore vs. Gujarat Titans where Shubman Gill played a magnificent innings and scored a ton and as we all know, how some teams have a toxic fanbase. So, after the match was over, an RCB fan on X(Formerly known as Twitter) posted a tweet in which Shubman Gill’s sister’s Instagram ID was there in which he wrote, ”You guys now know what to comment on her posts”. This is what I don’t like about our cricket fans. Whether their favourite team/national team loses, the opposing team’s player who won them or their families will be cussed, they will be cussed. Also, related to this GT vs. RCB match, I remember a Kohli fangirl posted a tweet taunting Shubman Gill, saying, “He is your idol, right? How can you play this knock against your idol’s team and eliminate him from the league? Extremely disappointed with you!” This where I think logic dies as IPL is a league where you have to perform well to go through the finals as there is no friendship and just have to play for the team in which you are in.
Returning to the national team, we all know everyone has a favourite player, and the fans can go to any limits whether the player is right or wrong. I also know some people, from friends to some great people whom I am in touch with, are good team supporters and they criticize performances as well as they also praise every individual’s performance whether we win or lose. This should be done by everyone, but the toxic fans decide to compare and cuss the players who didn’t perform well. I would also like to confess that I, too was till 2020 was one of these people but never cussed any player I would instead make fun of them and just say,” This player should just stop playing as he doesn’t have anything significant in him”. But then, the perspective changed, and I realised that the nation should be 1st and favourites will never be there as this is a team game.
Recently, in an IND vs. WI match, Tilak Varma, the debutant for India, was on 49 and 1 or 2 runs were needed to win Hardik scored the final runs and won that match for India. The next day, some fanbases started to troll Hardik that He should be ashamed of himself, that he should have waited to give strike to complete his 50 he is arrogant etc. Here, I wanted to say that if the Team/Nation is winning, then why would we look at personal records, whether it’s a debutant or an old player? Are personal documents important to the nation?
I have seen people compare our own players through stats to prove who is better. Recently, They started to compare Sachin and Kohli, which caused a massive fight between these 2 fanbases. Here I would like to remind all those Kohli fans who were comparing him to Sachin; Kohli said in an interview: “Honestly, I don’t see a comparison with that man because of whom I started to play cricket.” The thing is, after reading this statement, the fans would still not stop and keep comparing.
Also, another 2 things which I have seen in ICT fans is they can change sides anytime. I would give you an example, India vs. Pakistan T20 World Cup 2022. We all everybody remember Kohli’s knock, right? One Tweet I saw then was, “If Kohli plays slow like this and if we lose, I will deactivate my account.” But, just after the match finished, that fan wrote, “Kohli man, you are the goat you shut every hater’s mouth.” Another example is if an Indian player is failing consecutively and tries to make a comeback by bashing a Minnow team, A sudden fanbase would say, “He just bashes Minnows, nothing else!”
But, if their favorite player does the same, they would say, “Bro though it was a weak team, but least he got his form back we can’t blame him.” And if you try to argue with them by their previous statement made for that particular player, He would finish it by saying, “Bro, I know you hate that he made a ton, and you are just defending another player by hating him and can’t digest he made a ton.” Why would I defend others when I am happy to see our players regaining their form and hate a particular player?
Another thing to notice is if any cricketing legend says negative something about their favourite player, the fanbase won’t even regret cussing, trolling and threatening that legend who has more experience from cricket’s point of view. The thing here is the players ignore the statements made by the commentators or the legends, but these fanbases cannot digest the criticism. And if that legend comments on other players then these fanbases would highly support them. The thing is, we only see cricket nowadays to watch our favourite player, not for the team. I have seen some fans do that if their favourite player is out early, then they would switch off the TV and put on stories of Don’t worry, we are with your stories, and if the team fails and loses the contest then they would troll and cuss everyone except their favourite player who too had a failure.
This is where I get angry as I am a Dhoni fan; I have seen die-hard toxic Dhoni fans cussing bowlers in the comment section as the particular bowler who got him out and cursing their families. As an Indian Cricket Team fan, these things break my heart, and it feels sad when these fans start to praise foreign players more than our Indian players. These things will be done more if we will have a poor performance in this year’s World Cup. Just think, if we got eliminated from the World Cup, either from the group stage or from the semi-finals, what would these toxic fans do? My only point is criticizing a team or a player is okay, but being fully toxic and cussing and giving threats to the players is not what I expect from ICT fans.
So, this is what I wanted to say in the matter of toxicity, being dumb, flipping sides, diplomats, cussing players and their families and being a trash fanbase ICT fans is No.1. We now rarely can see good fans and it’s sad to see these kinds of behaviours for our players and I hope that these people understand someday and start to accept losing too and give an excellent support to our players.