The ugly Twitter war between former India cricketers Venkatesh Prasad and Aakash Chopra over KL Rahul's place in the national team sparked a meme wave on the microblogging site, with netizens having fun at the expense of the two retired players.
While Aakash Chopra and Venkatesh Prasad's scuffle divided opinion on the social network, several Team India fans mocked them with hilarious memes and jokes, highlighting how the duo was fighting like kids on a public platform.
Venky sir aur aakash Chopra agar galti se IPL debate me aa jaye tab pic.twitter.com/dXxU3j0JXI
— विजय (@bijjuu11) February 21, 2023
— Jyran (@Jyran45) February 21, 2023
Aakash Chopra and Venkatesh Prasad rn ; pic.twitter.com/jBtGoKOcnD
— bii2 🇮🇳 (@realbii2) February 22, 2023
Venkatesh Prasad vs Aakash Chopra on KL Rahul pic.twitter.com/E71OqXCreU
— Rajabets India🇮🇳👑 (@smileandraja) February 21, 2023
Aakash Chopra and KL Rahul going to Venky’s house pic.twitter.com/OJ6wTUM7MS
— sudhanshu’ (@whoshud) February 21, 2023
Aakash Chopra and Venkatesh Prasad's trolling on Twitter came after their confrontation turned murkier on Tuesday.
After Aakash Chopra labeled Venkatesh Prasad as an agenda peddler due to his continuous attacks on out-of-form India opener KL Rahul, the latter fired back at the former and even declined his offer to have a one-to-one discussion on the matter.
“I am not saying KL Rahul will become like Rohit Sharma but I humbly request you to stay calm. If there are any agendas, let's not peddle them. Let's talk about the numbers that are actually there and not those that suit your thoughts,” Aakash Chopra said on his YouTube channel.
Aakash Chopra's remarks, however, didn't go well with Venkatesh Prasad, who immediately hit back at him on Twitter.
“So my friend Aakash Chopra after making a vile video on YouTube this morning where he calls me an agenda peddle, conveniently and cleverly misquotes me, removes Mayank's average of 70 at home, wants to gag views which are not in line with what he believes but wanted Rohit out,” Venkatesh Prasad wrote on the microblogging site.
“I have no agenda against any player, maybe there are others who have. Difference of opinion is fine but calling contrary views as apna personal agenda and Twitter par mat laayein is funny for Aakash Chopra, considering he has made a great career by airing his views. I have nothing against KL or any other player, my voice has been against unfair selection and different yardsticks for performers. Be it Sarfaraz or Kuldeep, have voiced based on merit. But it was disappointing to see Aakash calling it personal agenda,” he added.
But Aakash Chopra claimed that his former India teammate misinterpreted his words.
“Venky bhai, msgs are getting lost in translation. You here. Me on YT. I invite you to come on a Video Chat…we can do it Live. Difference on opinions is nice…lets do it properly I'll not have any sponsors on it & nobody will make money out of it. Up for it? You have my number,” Aakash Chopra tweeted.
Venkatesh Prasad, though, declined his invitation. “No Aakash, nothing is lost in translation. In your 12 minute video you have called me as an agenda peddler because it didn't suit your narrative. It is crystal clear. And I have made my points very clear in this Twitter thread. Don't wish to engage with you further on this.”
The shocking saga between Aakash Chopra and Venkatesh Prasad began last week when the former India bowling coach's sharp words against KL Rahul got a response from the former.
Aakash Chopra suggested that Venkatesh Prasad could have waited till the end of the second innings of the Test match in Delhi to launch his latest attack on the under-fire Karnataka batter.
“And the torrid run continues. More to do with rigidity of the management to persist with a player who just hasn’t looked the part. No top order batsman in atleast last 20 years of Indian cricket has played these many tests with such a low average,” Venkatesh Prasad had tweeted after KL Rahul’s failure in the first innings of the second Test in Delhi.
To this, Aakash Chopra responded: “Venky Bhai, Test match chal raha hai. How about, at least, waiting for both the innings to get over. All of us are in the same team i.e. Team India. Not asking you to hold back your thoughts but timing could be a little better. After all, our game is all about the timing.”
“Honestly doesn’t matter , Aakash. In my view it is very fair criticism even if he scores a half century in the second innings . And between the match or after the match is irrelevant here. Best wishes for your lovely videos on YT, I do enjoy them,” Venkatesh Prasad said in his reply to Aakash Chopra’s post.
He said his criticism of KL Rahul was not a personal agenda, and he was one of his well-wishers.
Venkatesh Prasad then advised KL Rahul to play county cricket in England because scoring on pitches that aid seam movement and in conditions where the ball moves a lot would boost his confidence, and he would become a much more assured batter.
Despite his repeated failures, KL Rahul was named in the squad for the last two Test matches against the Australian cricket team, announced on Sunday.
On Monday, Venkatesh Prasad shared his views on this development before comparing KL Rahul with out-of-favor Ajinkya Rahane, who was removed from the side last year after a prolonged slump with the bat.
“With KL being retained for the remaining 2 test matches, if he is picked in the playing 11, Indore is his best chance of coming back to form and silencing critics like me. Else needs to play county cricket, perform well and make a comeback in the Test side,” he said.
“And if overseas performance is a criteria, Ajinkya Rahane despite being out of form and also inconsistent before being dropped had one of the best overseas Test record, averaging over 40 overseas in 50 test matches. Was out of form and dropped,” the ex-India fast bowler argued.
“There is a view that KL Rahul has an outstanding overseas Test record. But stats speak otherwise. He has a test avg of 30 overseas in 56 innings. He has scored 6 overseas centuries but followed it up with a string of low scores that’s why averaging 30,” Venkatesh Prasad pointed out.
In his last seven knocks, KL Rahul has failed to cross the 25-run mark. Following scores of 22, 23, 10, and 2 against Bangladesh in December, KL Rahul has produced three dismal outings against Australia – collecting 20, 17, and 1 in the Tests in Nagpur and Delhi.