Smriti Mandhana’s Graceful Response to Unwanted Comparisons with Virat Kohli

In a thrilling final-over showdown at the Arun Jaitley Stadium, Smriti Mandhana led Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) to their first-ever T20 title in the Women’s Premier League (WPL) 2024, ending their 16 years of disappointment. Mandhana’s exemplary performance not only secured victory for RCB but also sparked inevitable comparisons with Indian cricket superstar, Virat Kohli.

While Mandhana is celebrated as the face of RCB’s women’s team, Kohli has long led the batting charge for RCB’s men’s team in the Indian Premier League (IPL). Despite Mandhana’s remarkable achievement in guiding her team to victory, she gracefully dismissed any attempts to compare her success to Kohli’s storied career.

Addressing a reporter’s query after the historic win, Mandhana emphasized the unfairness of undermining Kohli’s achievements. “The title is one thing, but what he (Kohli) has achieved for India is remarkable,” she stated. Mandhana’s respect for Kohli’s contributions to Indian cricket shone through her words, highlighting that a single title does not define a player’s legacy.

Mandhana’s performance in the WPL final, scoring 31 runs off 39 balls, contributed to RCB’s triumph over Delhi Capitals. However, her modesty and sportsmanship were evident as she emphasized the importance of respecting Kohli’s accomplishments. “The reason why I do not like the comparison is that what he has achieved is great; he has been an inspirational person,” Mandhana explained.

With Faf du Plessis at the helm, RCB’s men’s team has faced its own share of challenges in the IPL, failing to clinch the title despite reaching the finals three times. Mandhana’s victory with RCB’s women’s team adds a new chapter to the franchise’s history, but she remains grounded, acknowledging the collective effort of the team and the respect owed to Kohli.

In the midst of celebrations and accolades, Smriti Mandhana’s dignified response serves as a reminder of the values of humility and respect in the world of sports. As she continues to inspire young cricketers with her performances on the field, her graciousness off the field only adds to her stature as a role model for aspiring athletes everywhere.


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