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Hanuma Vihari accuses Andhra teammate of dirty politics; youngster hits back in major scandal

Hanuma Vihari didn’t mince his words as he narrated his ordeal after Andhra Pradesh were knocked out of the Ranji Trophy in quarter-finals on Monday

There’s trouble brewing in Andhra Pradesh cricket. The side’s spirited performance in the quarter-final of the Ranji Trophy ended in disappointment on Monday, as it suffered a heart-wrenching four-run defeat to Madhya Pradesh in Indore. Despite chasing a modest 169-run target, Andhra’s batting order collapsed, and they fell agonizingly short of victory despite senior batter Hanuma Vihari’s valiant half-century knock of 55. The worst, however, was yet to come for the side, and by extension, the state cricket board, too.

Hanuma Vihari’s Instagram post triggers controversy in Andhra’s cricketing circles(AP)

Following the defeat, a storm erupted within the Andhra Pradesh cricketing circles when Vihari, who had captained the side in the side’s opening match of the season, made a startling revelation. In a controversial statement posted on Instagram, Vihari disclosed the circumstances surrounding his departure from the captaincy role; in the statement, he also confirmed that he won’t be representing Andhra Pradesh anymore.

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Vihari revealed that he was asked to resign from the captaincy position after the first game, following an altercation with a player who happened to be the son of a prominent politician. The episode, in his words, led to Vihari’s ousting from the leadership role.

Here’s the full statement from Vihari:

“We fought hard till the end but it wasn’t meant to be. Gutted to lose an another quarters with Andhra.

“This post is about some facts I want to put forward. I was the captain in the first game against Bengal, during that game I shouted on 17th player and he complained to his dad(who is a politician), his dad in return asked the Association to take action against me. Although, we chased 410 against last year’s finalists Bengal I was asked to resign from captaincy without any fault of mine. I never said anything on a personal note to the player but the association thought that player was more important than the guy who gave his body on the line last year and batted left handed, took Andhra to knock outs 5 times in the last 7 years and played for India in 16 tests.

“I felt embarrassed but the only reason I continued playing this season because I respect the game and my team.

“Sad part is association thinks that players have to listen to whatever they say and players are there because of them. I felt humiliated and embarrassed but I’ve not expressed it out until today.

“I’ve decided that I’ll never play for Andhra where i lost my self respect.

“I love the team.

“I love the way we’re growing every season but association doesn’t want us to grow.”

Here’s the post from Vihari

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Hanuma vihari (@viharigh)

Vihari had joined Andhra Pradesh last season after representing Hyderabad since the beginning of his career. He captained Andhra to the quarterfinals, where they faced Madhya Pradesh at the same venue. During the match, Vihari sustained a forearm fracture while batting. Despite the injury, he displayed remarkable resilience by returning to bat left-handed. However, his efforts were in vain as Andhra suffered defeat.

Young cricketer reacts

Interestingly, roughly an hour after Vihari posted his ordeal on Instagram, an Andhra cricketer – Kuntrapakam Narsimha Prudhviraj – posted a cryptic story on his profile on the same app. While he didn’t take Hanuma Vihari’s name, it seemed the story referred to the senior batter, as Prudhviraj seemed to provide his side of the story. In his story, the young cricketer accused Vihari of playing the “sympathy card.”

“Hello everyone iam that guy, you guys are searching in that comment box, what ever you guys heard is absolute false, no one is higher then game and my self respect is much more bigger then anything, personal attacks and vulger language is unacceptable in any kind of human platform Everyone in team knows what has happened in that day. Play this sympathy games, however u want,” he wrote.

Letter from the team

Hours after his post, Hanuma Vihari posted a picture showing a letter from the Andhra team, where the players urged the board to let Vihari stay as the captain of the side. Ricky Bhui, who took over as captain following Vihari’s departure from the role, signed the letter along with many other team members.

“The whole team knows,” Vihari wrote in his tweet as he attached the picture of the letter.


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