Aakash Chopra hints at New Zealand bias in KKR selection; gets trolled

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Aakash Chopra made a controversial claim ahead of Friday (October 1) night’s IPL 2021 encounter in Dubai.

The former India batter turned commentator suggested that there is a ‘Kiwi’ bias in play behind the selection of Tim Seifert ahead of Shakib Al Hasan on Kolkata Knight Riders’ (KKR) part.

Chopra claimed that had Shakib also been from New Zealand like Seifert, he would’ve made the KKR playing XI against Punjab Kings (PBKS) in Dubai.

Notably, former New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum is KKR’s head coach and is obviously an influential voice behind KKR’s decision-making.

Aakash Chopra

Aakash Chopra claimed Tim Seifert got his IPL debut due to Kiwi bias from Brendon McCullum.

“If only Shakib were a Kiwi…,” Chopra tweeted as the KKR camp was seen handing Seifert his debut IPL cap.

Aakash Chopra’s ‘Kiwi’ bias claim offends fans

However, it would be far-fetched to suggest that McCullum showed bias towards his countrymen in playing Seifert ahead of Shakib.

Some fans found it disrespectful towards McCullum, who was undoubtedly one of New Zealand’s finest players and captains and also argued that Chopra is being nasty on KKR only because of his fall out with the franchise in the past.

It is justifiably arguable that in playing Seifert instead of Shakib and fielding only four specialist bowlers, KKR left themselves a touch unbalanced.

But a hint from Aakash Chopra that there was some bias in play behind the move wasn’t quite right and understandably it wasn’t taken lightly by Twitterati.

Here is how Aakash Chopra’s tweet was received:

 

Shakib hasn’t featured yet for KKR during the UAE leg of IPL 2021, having played only three games in the Indian leg. In those three matches, the Bangladeshi all-rounder had made just 38 runs at a strike-rate of 97.43 and took only 2 wickets with an economy rate of 8.10.

Seifert, the New Zealand wicketkeeper and batter, has played 35 T20Is with 695 runs at a strike-rate of 133.14.



A cricket writer by heart and profession. Currently at work for CricXtasy. Previously with Circle of Cricket. You can find him on Twitter @crickashish217