The ICC World Cup 2023 is full swing, captivating cricket enthusiasts worldwide. However, one aspect of the tournament has raised eyebrows and sparked discussions: the surprising number of empty seats in the stands during the India vs. Afghanistan game. This unexpected sight led former England cricket legend Michael Vaughan to question the reasons behind the vacant seats. In response, former India spinner Harbhajan Singh weighed in on the matter, highlighting an issue that has piqued the curiosity of cricket fans.
The turnout of spectators for the ICC World Cup 2023 has astonished many cricket fans. While matches not involving the Indian team have seen relatively low enthusiasm among fans, it was widely expected that stadiums would be packed when India took the field. Typically, when Team India plays, especially on home turf, stands are brimming with passionate fans. However, the current tournament has proven to be an exception.
The unusual phenomenon of empty seats became evident when India commenced their World Cup campaign against Australia at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai. Despite the anticipation surrounding this high-stakes match, many seats remained unoccupied. This surprising sight left many questioning the factors contributing to the lack of spectators.
The situation was similar when India squared off against Afghanistan at the Arun Jaitley Stadium in Delhi. Even though fans started to pour in as the game progressed, the stands at the beginning of the match were not filled. This consistent pattern of empty seats during matches involving India continued to intrigue onlookers.
Famed England cricketer Michael Vaughan couldn’t ignore this issue. Taking to social media, he questioned the noticeable absence of spectators in the stands during the India game in Delhi. Vaughan’s tweet, which asked, “Why so many empty seats in #Delhi for the India Game,” stirred up the cricket community, prompting various reactions.
Harbhajan Singh, former India spinner and a World Cup winner, chose to respond to Vaughan’s inquiry. In his response, Harbhajan drew attention to an essential aspect of cricket-watching: the game itself. With a touch of humour, he questioned Vaughan, “Are you watching the game or empty seats??”
Are u watching the game or empty seats ?? https://t.co/4e1wgfAckn— Harbhajan Turbanator (@harbhajan_singh) October 11, 2023
While the empty seats in the stands raised questions, Team India’s performance on the field was exceptional. India triumphed over Afghanistan by 8 wickets, securing their second victory in the World Cup. Afghanistan posted a competitive total of 272 for 8, with Jasprit Bumrah standing out with 4 wickets for 39 runs in his 10 overs.
Captain Rohit Sharma was the match’s star, delivering a record-breaking performance with the bat. He blazed his way to a century, facing just 63 balls, and ultimately scored 131 runs before being dismissed by Rashid Khan. Virat Kohli also contributed a fifty as India comfortably crossed the finish line.
India’s next challenge in the ICC World Cup is a highly anticipated encounter with Pakistan at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad. This marquee clash promises to be an electrifying event that cricket fans from both nations are eagerly awaiting.