‘Why would anyone think I’m not serious about my game?’

In a recent podcast with popular YouTuber Ranveer Allahbadia, renowned as ‘BeerBiceps,’ K L Rahul addressed the intense backlash he faced on social media.

Fans and even former cricketers didn’t hold back in expressing their dissatisfaction, with some calling for Rahul to be dropped from the squad.

Taking a moment to reflect, Rahul shared his thoughts on the criticism and the detrimental effects it can have on an athlete’s well-being.

Expressing his gratitude towards those who supported him during his challenging phase, Rahul delved into the issue of online hate. He shed light on how the relentless negativity and scrutiny on social media can adversely impact a sportsperson’s mental state and performance.

‘I’m very grateful. I know the last few months haven’t been great for me on the field, and the kind of support I’ve gotten tells that I’ve done something right in my life. Not just as a cricketer, but also as a person. It feels close to my heart; that’s when you know that you had a good impact on people,’ Rahul began.

‘It’s so easy in modern day to… when you see negative comments, when you see someone is down, a few people pick on it and all of them just want to jump on the train and make that person worse than he’s already feeling.

‘That sometimes affects me, and affects lot of the other boys as well. When some people feel they have the power to say anyone they want, just see what the person is going through. None of us want to perform badly. This is our life, this is what we all do. I don’t know anything else apart from cricket. Why would anyone think I’m not serious about my game, and I’m not working hard enough?’ Rahul said.

As the conversation unfolded, Rahul highlighted the importance of understanding the pressures and challenges faced by athletes and the role fans play in shaping their confidence and resilience.

‘In sport, there’s no connection. I worked hard, but the results didn’t go my way, but sometimes, I didn’t work as hard as I probably would, but got the results. Sports has no formula, things happen for you.’

‘There are people who support the players, but I personally try to stay away from both (good and bad comments). You have to. Sometimes, you do want to listen to people say good things, but you realise if you get sucked into that, you also have to be ready to face the other side. You’ve to choose what you want to do.

‘If you’re a person who doesn’t get affected by all that, sure, you do that. For a long time, it didn’t affect me. I was like, ‘I don’t care. I will prove these guys wrong’. But later on, I realised it does affect me, I just tried to hide it,’ said Rahul.

By addressing the issue, he hoped to spark a broader conversation about fostering a more positive and constructive environment for both players and fans alike.

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