Virat Kohli's fan causes major security breach during Kanpur ODI
What’s the story?
Virat Kohli seems to be single-handedly safeguarding the interests of ODI cricket in India with his legendary run of form in recent times. His fans are thronging the stands to catch a glimpse of the modern day great, although some overzealous followers don’t seem to mind spilling over to the main arena.
A major security breach occurred at the Green Park stadium in Kanpur, the venue of the deciding ODI between India and New Zealand, when a fan casually walked out on the main ground to congratulate Virat Kohli on reaching his hundred.
In case you didn’t know…
The Green Park stadium has been notorious for housing over-enthusiastic fans, who have breached the boundaries of play in the past as well. In June this year, an ardent Suresh Raina fan jumped out of the stands during a Gujarat Lions-Delhi Daredevils game and made his way to the middle to meet Raina. He had to be ushered out by Raina and the on-field umpires, with no policemen in near sight.
The heart of the matter
The incident occurred in the 44th over of India’s innings, when Kohli tucked Mitchell Santner past cover to bring up his 32nd ODI hundred. As he took off his helmet to acknowledge the crowd, the unnamed fanatic crossed the ropes, sneaked past the security personnel and started casually jaywalking towards the pitch.
He was stopped in his tracks by the square-leg umpire, who intervened and asked the young fan, draped in India colours and carrying Kohli’s name on his back, to return to the seats. He took his own sweet time to return, and became the centre of attention of the crowd, and photographers, before being hauled up by the security.
The local police have detained the spectator, and he is expected to be let off after questioning. As far as the game is concerned, the two teams will move to Delhi for the first T20I, the farewell match of veteran pacer Ashish Nehra.
Watching one’s favourite player in flesh and blood is a treat in itself, but the boundaries of decency need to be in order, despite the fanatical following of the game in the country. By making his way towards the main pitch, the fan exposed serious security loopholes, barely a month after the infamous stone-throwing incident in Guwahati.
With Kanpur having experienced similar instances in the past, one would have expected the security to not be as lax as it turned out to be. The spectator disrupted play for a couple of minutes, and could easily have made his way to the main pitch had the third umpire not intervened.