Arjun Tendulkar got selected because of his hard work and not his surname, says Pranav Dhanawade's father
The Pranav Dhanawade and Arjun Tendulkar row seems to be finally coming to an end, with Pranav’s father Prashant Dhanawade coming out in support of Arjun Tendulkar’s inclusion in the U-16 West Zone team. While the social media is still abuzz with voices of injustice and nepotism, Prashant Dhanawade has clearly told the media that Arjun’s selection is a result of his hard work and Pranav was technically not even in contention for the selection of the U-16 West Zone team of which Sachin Tendulkar’s son has managed to become a part of.
The controversy started when Arjun Tendulkar made to the U-16 squad for West Zone to play in an inter-zonal tournament. The social media, as it has done so often in the recent past, didn’t care to check its facts and started questioning the exclusion of Pranav Dhanawade who burst on to the scene earlier this year with a record-smashing 1009 runs in a match between his school KC Gandhi English High School and Arya Gurukul.
A meme pointed out that Arjun was selected merely on the basis of being the son of the little master and was circulated on the internet.
Pranav’s father finally doused the fire when he told Firstpost, "When Pranav made the record, he wasn't under the age of 16. The selection for Mumbai's U-16 team happened before Pranav's record and they had also played many matches. Just one match was played after his record. So since Pranav didn't feature for the Mumbai U-16 team, he cannot be a part of the Zonal side, that's the procedure.
“The selectors look at players' performance in the Mumbai side over a period of 2-3 years, and since Pranav wasn't part of the Mumbai side question of selection doesn't come in. The person who has spread this news has based it on half-known facts, he doesn't have knowledge of cricket,"
He also pointed out that Pranav was not even eligible for the selection when he told Firstpost, "Pranav has now completed sixteen years of age. Now he is in the U-19 age category. Even Arjun has now moved under the U-19 category, but since the selection was made when he was under the age of sixteen, he will complete his zonal matches before moving to the U-19 category as per the BCCI rule."
Pranav’s father also threw weight behind Arjun Tendulkar and said it was no nepotism but his hard work that earned him a place in the team. He told the media, “Arjun is a very hard-working boy. If anyone has watched him closely, he won’t make such baseless comments. I know him since the last 5-6 years, as Pranav and Arjun used to play together.
“They are good friends, they speak regularly with each other. Arjun's progress is down to his hardwork and not because of his father's name. His hardwork lies behind his success.”
The whole episode has shown how fickle the social media has become. While on one hand, the netizens are baying for the blood of a comic who they think insulted their idol and hero Sachin Tendulkar, on the other hand, they didn’t even bother to check the facts before dragging the great batsman to such a controversy.
Thankfully, for now, the controversy has been laid to rest.