India news July 19, 2017

Ashwin compares Chennai Super Kings comeback to Munich air disaster

ESPNcricinfo staff

R Ashwin fields off his own bowling © BCCI

India offspinner R Ashwin has waded into controversy by comparing Chennai Super Kings' return to the IPL fold to Manchester United's recovery from the horrific plane crash at Munich in 1958, in which 23 people including eight of their footballers died.

Chennai Super Kings finished their two-year suspension from the IPL on July 14 and will be back in the competition for the 11th edition next year.

"I think the two-year hiatus for CSK probably increases its value much like what it did for Manchester United when the air crash happened," Ashwin, who played for Super Kings between 2009-15, told the Times of India. "I don't know if it's in the same league but surely people in Chennai and fans across the world are waiting for CSK to return. I hope it turns out to be a good comeback."

The Manchester United squad had been returning home from a European Cup tie in Belgrade on February 6, 1958 when their British European Airways flight crashed on take-off following a refuelling stop. Ten years later, the team - including two survivors of the crash, Bobby Charlton and Bill Foulkes - became the first English winners of the European Cup with victory over Benfica at Wembley.

The comparison drew instant flak from the public, with many venting their ire on social media. However, Ashwin himself claimed he had been "misquoted" when he later took to Twitter to clarify his remarks.

"Guys please take the reporting with a pinch of salt with respect to the Munich tragedy and CSK. All I said was the break will make the fans turn up in numbers when the comeback happens. Not required to blow it out of context," he wrote.

"Now all those who hate me, please get off my mentions, we will catch-up sometime later when I get misquoted again. Thanks."

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Jay on July 21, 2017, 3:45 GMT

    Maybe his comment is naive but I am sure Ashwin meant no offence. Ashwin is a fine bowler and these comments and his response show maybe he is still maturing as a peson ( a simple apology/no offence intended would have been a better reply). I think it's a storm in a teacup and a small lesson for Ashwin. I wish him the best. Greetings from Oz.

  • Harry on July 20, 2017, 14:28 GMT

    Ashwin had to say something he could have said nothing. He got excited and spoke to media like he will to his beer buddy. CSK was the best team managed by corrupt idiots. BCCI should manage the teams and share revenue with franchise owners to avoid scandals.

  • thenys8766850 on July 20, 2017, 13:48 GMT

    still, it's farcical to compare csk's ouster n Man u's tragedy! no csk has its own reputation but Man u is on another level with so much history attached to it. It's actually naive of Ashwin to even talk these teams together in one sentence.

  • ram4fr9677970 on July 20, 2017, 11:08 GMT

    sachim0133762 : Yes. Shastri will do sure. but chances will go only to Mumbai or delhi/rcb players.

  • sahir on July 20, 2017, 11:02 GMT

    An honest player would never intend to play for a team which was convicted for spot fixing by its very own management. That tells loads about the so called branded csk players like Ash, MS, Raina and Jaddu. Absolutely deplorable that these players have no shame in backing and playing for a convicted team.

  • ram4fr9677970 on July 20, 2017, 10:35 GMT

    Vaibhav : CSK suspended due to owner betting on other teams or similar thing. its not due to any player get involved anything. So Players and fans deserved to speak anything!. CSK 3 time finalist and 2 time IPL winners in 8 attempts.

  • sachim0133762 on July 20, 2017, 10:18 GMT

    hope kohli and shastri push dhoni and yuvraj out of the team, and give chances to youngsters

  • Sathya on July 20, 2017, 9:14 GMT

    Most Loved Team in Football - Man U Most Loved Team in Cricket - CSK Most Hated Team in Football - Man u Most Hated Team in Cricket - CSK Criticism and hatred has never bothered the CSKians

  • pawand1982272 on July 20, 2017, 7:39 GMT

    It's amazing how people jump on these guys throats when they make any controversial comments. I am no Ashwin fan but the way readers are taking this opportunity to pick on him for not taking wickets abroad. surely he does not decide that India will play 15 odd tests at Home and in SC conditions.It is rightly pointed out that Home advantage is being utilised by almost every international bowler for years now. It is not a recent concept. If they were responsible, they would have been punished by the same supreme court which banned CSK. It's fair to say CSK is a fairly successful IPL team and has a huge fan following even outside Chennai. (And No I am not a CSK fan either, I support SRH and DD before that). Some people even have a problem with him speaking English well, I wonder if these guys will be happy if he decided to only speak Tamil. People forget that Hindi AND English are official languages of India. Unfortunately, the main problem is that Comment sections and social media have simply become tools for hate mongering. in terms of cricket. it's an opportunity for people frustrated with the boredom and strife of their lives to release some of their frustrations in the form of hateful comments directed to people who have achieved something. Most people in the comment section here, who think Ashwin is a mediocre or poor bowler have probably never played at any level significant level. mostly we have some college team rejects who are commenting on bowlers with 250 test wickets. Chill out guys, there is no use being so reactive and insensitive. Cheers

  • pranto on July 20, 2017, 7:14 GMT

    He should have compared Umumba football club of their own hreo Indian super league rather than Man like comparing diamond jewellery with imitation plastic

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