Kapil, who famously led India to its first ODI World Cup title in 1983, said, “I wasn’t invited there. They didn’t call me, so I did not go.”
He added that he would have loved to watch the match with all his fellow teammates, “but I guess due to the fact that it’s such a big event and people are so busy handling responsibilities, sometimes they forget,” Kapil said in a statement to ABP News.
While several former India captains, including Sourav Ganguly, graced the Narendra Modi Stadium, Kapil Dev’s absence raised eyebrows, especially because actor Ranveer Singh, who played him on-screen in the film ’83, was given a place in the VIP box along with wife Deepika Padukone and Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan, who brought his entire family along.
Angry fans took to Twitter to express their shock and disappointment and in the process, began trolling Ranveer. A Twitter user commented, “Ranveer played his role in 1983 so convincingly that everyone believes to this day, that he is the real Kapil Dev and even BCCI looks like invited him instead of the World Cup winning captain.”
Another said, “1983 World Cup Winning Captain Kapil Dev Wasn’t Invited To Watch Final. But We Can See Ranveer Singh Who Played Kapil Dev In Movie ’83 In Motera Stadium.”
Calling Ranveer ‘duplicate Kapil’, another said, “Real Kapil Dev was not Invited but Duplicate Kapil Dev was invited in 2023 ODI World Cup!!”
Ranveer played Kapil in the Kabir Khan sports film that sadly failed at the box office. The film which was made on a huge budget of over Rs 250 crore, had a lifetime box office collection of just around Rs 190 crore.
Another even noted that while Ranveer Singh and his reactions to the match along with his antics, were shown on TV a total of 17 times. Olympian, Neeraj Chopra didn’t feature even once on the TV screen by BCCI broadcasters.
“He is India’s best all-time athlete but was ignored like anything. Such a shame, again and again,” read the post.
The star-studded crowd at the high-profile game included renowned badminton legend Prakash Padukone was spotted among the attendees, contributing to the diverse array of celebrities witnessing the intense clash between the cricketing giants.
While the cricketer’s comments sparked outrage from fans and political parties, Kapil Dev assured all that there was no bad blood. He showered praises on skipper Rohit Sharma telling him to keep his spirits high in a motivational social media post that read, “Rohit you are a master at what you do. You have a lot of success awaiting you it’s tough I know but keep your spirits up. India is with you.”
“They didn’t call me…”: Kapil Dev on not being invited to the World Cup final