Mumbai: The controversy surrounding Mithali Raj and Indian women’s cricket team coach Ramesh Powar seems to be taking a turn for the worse. After Mithali Raj admitted it was the “darkest day of her life”, responding to Powar's allegations that she threatened retirement over a batting position, threw tantrums and created chaos in the side during the World T20; the 40-year-old coach posted a cryptic post on Twitter.
Just a few minutes after Mithali’s tweet, Powar posted a cryptic message which read, "Forgive others not because they deserve forgiveness, but because you deserve peace."
However, it irked many fans who stood in support of Mithali, stating she deserved better treatment from the team management.
Really sorry you r a big fool you r pointing out a legend don't forget you r nothing in front of her don't show male ego say sorry to her we in20years never seen her attitude and OK chalk what about your answer do drop mithali for 3 matches and what about not given chance mansi— ds (@_gllrs) November 29, 2018
Please sir .... Rehne digiye .....— Pragati Raj (@Pragati1998Raj) November 29, 2018
20 Saal s desh k lie khelne bali legend h @M_Raj03 km s km ek world cup to deserve krti h vo... Aisa lg rha h ki unka fame name apko pach ni rha ... Aakhir unko Pura Hindustan janta h r apko ??????
you don't desrve a place in women's cricket— Mudita Grover (@MuditaGrover) November 29, 2018
Shame on you, u will be remembered in history as the one who defamed the woman superstar of the nation and the one who cost Indian women team a world cup— Jebin Wesley (@vesleerulz) November 29, 2018
Abe chal Nikal ihase... baat karta h...mithali se coaching krwa lena bahut kuch sikh jayega— Nilay Mondal (@im_nilaymondal) November 29, 2018
Do not even dare to question the patriotism and dedication of world class player like @M_Raj03. She is the pride of our nation. You should know that the whole country stands with her.— Kaushik Raj (@kaushikrj6) November 29, 2018
I don’t how this guy got important job of head coach pic.twitter.com/KSZjNtOtfP— TheAjayAgwan (@IamAjay_27) November 29, 2018
Mr powar jitne match nhi apne khele h usse jyada satak lagae h mitali raaj ne ✌️— shudhanshu (@SumanShudhanshu) November 29, 2018
The war of words, which started with Mithali alleging that Powar was out to destroy her, intensified on Wednesday when the coach, in his tour report, questioned her conduct during the tournament in the West Indies.
India were knocked out following a semifinal loss to England, a match from which Mithali was controversially dropped despite being fit.
Mithali reacted to Powar's report by posting a brief statement on her official Twitter page on Thursday.
"I'm deeply saddened & hurt by the aspersions cast on me. My commitment to the game & 20yrs of playing for my country," she wrote.
"The hard work, sweat, in vain. Today, my patriotism doubted, my skill set questioned & all the mud slinging- it's the darkest day of my life. May god give strength," she added.
I'm deeply saddened & hurt by the aspersions cast on me. My commitment to the game & 20yrs of playing for my country.The hard work, sweat, in vain.— Mithali Raj (@M_Raj03) November 29, 2018
Today, my patriotism doubted, my skill set questioned & all the mud slinging- it's the darkest day of my life. May god give strength
The acrimony between the senior player and the coach has shaken Indian women's cricket, which gained significant traction after the team finished runners-up in the ODI World Cup last year.
It started with Mithali accusing Powar and Committee of Administrators' member Diana Edulji of bias. She claimed that while Diana used her position against her, Powar humiliated her with his indifference in the West Indies.
Powar, after declining comment initially, submitted a 10-page tour report to the BCCI in which he detailed his version of the events that led to the breakdown.
In the nearly five-page assessment of Mithali, Powar stated that the senior player threatened to leave the tournament midway at being dropped from the opening slot despite being duly consulted before the move.
He also accused her of chasing personal milestones while ignoring the team's cause.
"I was saddened by her attitude and it gave me an impression that Mithali Raj comes first and then India. She threw a lot of tantrums and created a lot of chaos," Powar stated in his report.
"I hope Mithali stops blackmailing, pressurising coaches and putting her interest first than the team," he said while summarising the 35-year-old batter's performance on the tour.
The 40-year-old Powar's interim tenure comes to an end on Friday.
Even though he will be free to apply for the post when fresh applications are invited, there is little chance that he will be retained owing to the ongoing controversy....