The actor says comparisons with cricketer Sourav Ganguly are embarrassing, but he wouldn’t have him back in Kolkata Knight Riders
Asking the fans to grow up, Bollywood superstar and Kolkata Knight Riders owner Shahrukh Khan Tuesday tried to put to rest comparisons with Sourav Ganguly by stating that the fans should stop comparing the two. “The fans should grow up. This is sport. We should play it like a sport. We keep talking about Kings and Khans… this is crap, to be honest,” Shahrukh said on the sidelines of the KKR post-match party. “To be honest, if we don’t outgrow this, it is not only embarrassing for us, it is embarrassing for Dada too. We should get over this. Whenever I come to Kolkata, you bring this up…then I think it’s a little unfair,” a visibly annoyed Shahrukh said.
For the first three Indian Premier League (IPL) editions, Ganguly was an indispensable part of the Knight Riders, though the association was not controversy-free. The prince of Kolkata captained the team in the inaugural year, but lost the job in the second season which was marked by his run-ins with coach John Buchanan. Ganguly got back the captaincy in the third season, but his authority was much diluted amidst reports of growing differences with SRK. Finally, Shahrukh dumped Ganguly from the team last year, and appointed Gautam Gambhir as skipper. After finding no takers in the players’ auction, Ganguly made a belated entry into the 22 yards for Pune Warriors as a replacement for Ashish Nehra. And this year, Warriors have anointed him captain-cum-mentor.
The May 5 match between Knight Riders and Pune Warriors was billed as a ‘Dada versus Shahrukh’ grudge match. Shahrukh said the regular comparisons were unfair on Ganguly. “Instead of making him small with these comparisons, we all should applaud the greatness he has achieved. I am the greatest fan of Dada as far as cricket is concerned. We wish him whenever he plays,” the actor said.
When asked whether Sourav will be brought in as the mentor of the team in the next session, Shahrukh said: “I’m the mentor of this team. The owner of this team. The hero of this team. I’m the God of this team.”