justin langer
Former Australian cricketer Justin Langer shared his awe at the overwhelming number of fans wearing MS Dhoni’s No. 7 jerseys, highlighting Dhoni’s immense popularity in India.

Justin Langer, the former Australian cricketer and coach of Lucknow Super Giants in IPL 2024, shared his observations on the immense admiration for MS Dhoni in India. Langer marveled at the overwhelming support for Dhoni, noting a sea of No.7 jerseys at matches against Chennai Super Kings.

During games at Ekana Stadium in Lucknow, nearly 48,000 fans sported Dhoni’s iconic No. 7 jersey in a 50,000-capacity arena. When playing in Chennai, Langer witnessed a remarkable 100% presence of Dhoni jerseys. He expressed awe at the level of hero worship in India, highlighting the devotion and fan following for cricket legends like Dhoni and Kohli.

“It’s extraordinary. I heard about it first; then we played them [CSK] twice. They came to Lucknow, and our capacity crowd [in Ekana Stadium] is about 50,000, and honestly, there would have been 48,000 MS Dhoni number seven shirts. I couldn’t believe it, and then we went to CSK, and there wasn’t 98%; there was 100%. And it’s unbelievable. The hero worship in India is unbelievable,” Langer said to BBC Sport.

“And look, I felt it when we played in India before as a player, particularly with Sachin Tendulkar. Then, when I was coaching with [Australia], Virat Kohli, and MS Dhoni, But when you get over there, it’s unbelievable,” he added.

READ ALSO | Justin Langer Negates Rumours Of Applying For India’s Head Coach Position, Says ‘It Is Exhausting’

However, Justin Langer also shed light on the contrasting reactions towards players in India. He then highlighted the challenging situation faced by Hardik Pandya, who succeeded Rohit Sharma as Mumbai Indians’ captain to some fans’ disapproval. Despite Pandya’s role as vice-captain of the Indian T20I team, he encountered boos from spectators in every match.

“And I saw the flip side of it as well because Rohit Sharma is a huge hero in India as India captain. And what happened with Mumbai Indians this year… Hardik Pandya took over as the captain from Rohit Sharma. The much-loved Rohit Sharma. And it was really sad to watch. You know, he got booed every game by the Indian crowds. He’s the vice-captain of the Indian T20I squad. So, I saw both sides of it. I learned this from Jonty Rhodes and Morne Morkel, who’d been to the IPL before. Rather than getting upset by it, go with the flow,” Langer concluded.



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Last Updated on May 25, 2024

Senior Sports Copywriter