India's young wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant was Sunday caught in the eye of a storm owing to an edited stump microphone clip from an IPL game which is going viral on social media but was dismissed by the BCCI as "misconstrued". The less-than-a-minute long clip was from Saturday night's match between Pant's Delhi Capitals and Kolkata Knight Riders. It shows Pant, from behind the stumps, saying that "yeh to chauka hai" (this is a boundary) as KKR's Robin Uthappa took to guard against Sandeep Lamichhane.
Coincidently, the next ball went for a four through the extra cover region. The ball was tossed up by Sandeep Lamichhane and in-form Robin Uthappa was on it and scored a boundary which eventually led the fans to cry foul, claiming that the match was "fixed".
Delhi won the match in Super Over after the scores were tied in the regulation overs.
"No one heard what Rishabh said before that particular sentence. He was apparently telling (Delhi Capitals captain) Shreyas Iyer to increase fielders on off-side to stop an imminent four," a top BCCI official told PTI.
The next delivery was pushed through the covers for a boundary and the edited clip of Pant's purported prediction started doing the rounds from unverified Twitter accounts, claiming to be cricket fans.
What wasn't clear from the video clip was the context of Pant's comment. It has been learnt that Hotstar, who hold the digital (streaming rights) rights of the IPL, have complained to various social media platforms for illegal use of their footage and are getting the clippings removed. The BCCI official said that it was "very unfortunate" that social media ran an incomplete clipping.
"Maligning a young cricketer without even knowing the details is so unfortunate. A section of media allowed social media to insinuate and vilify a young talent without getting into details. This is so disgusting," said the official.
This isn't the first time that stump microphone has pushed Pant into the spotlight. During his highly successful tour of Australia, Pant's humourous teasing of rival batsmen, especially Aussie captain Tim Paine, went viral on social media.