KOCHI: Not knowing Sachin Tendulkar is a big crime, but more than that, it seems tennis star Maria Sharapova will have to answer for another, greater folly- of not knowing the Malayalam language!
A day after the news about the Russian ace’s ignorance of the cricketing legend took the social media platforms by storm, the story has taken a more embarrassing turn for Malayalis. Following the reports about her lack of knowledge about Sachin, self-proclaimed fans of the cricketing great start posting abusive comments on Sharapova’s official Facebook page, with most being rather abusive in nature. And much to the shame of Malayalis, most of comments were posted by Keralites, that too in Malayalam. When Maria answered, saying that she just did not know what the person meant, came another post from a Malayali- “Ninakku Malayalom Ariyilledee??...” (You don’t know Malayalam either?).
The comment was posted in a rather vulgar tone and obviously in poor taste. The online battle to enlighten Sharapova is pointed as a shame to the Keralites by many on the social media. But the abusive posts continued to pour in even till late on Thursday. The five-time Grand Slam winner’s page was filled with aggressive remarks - some even abusive - by surfers who were “determined to teach her a lesson”. Of course, some of the posts are rather in the lighter vein and quite harmless. There were some like-- “Facebook Likes: Sachin Tendulkar-20,147,416, Maria Sharapova- 13,629,936. Twitter Followers: Sachin Tendulkar- 4.38M, Maria Sharapova- 1.1M. Now Who Is This Maria Sharapova?????”. The ‘latest online battle’ began during the ongoing Wimbledon tennis championship. The ‘God of Cricket’, who is a regular at the tournament, was seen in the Royal Box last week, in the company of other sporting greats like football hero David Beckham.
When asked about the occupants of the Royal Box at the post-match conference, Sharapova said she was familiar with David Beckham. When a reporter asked “Sachin Tendulkar was the other person who came in at the same time as David. Do you know who Sachin is?,” Sharapova reportedly answered “I don’t.”