Sunil Gavaskar gives it back to Kerry O’Keeffe in his own style
Kerry O’Keeffe had made fun of the names of some of India cricketers on how tough it was to pronounce.
Updated - Jan 4, 2019 9:59 am
Since the day commentator Kerry O’Keefe, made some racist comments on Indian cricketers, he has only attracted controversies. It all started when he made a remark during the Melbourne Test. Firstly, he began with a comment on India’s debutant Mayank Agarwal. Later on, he made another remark on names of Indian cricketers- Cheteshwar Pujara and Ravindra Jadeja. On Day 1 of the SCG Test, in order to take a dig on O’Keeffe, Sunil Gavaskar slyly made a comment on Marnus Labuschagne.
This happened when the South African born Labuschagne, the newest Test recruit for Australia, was asked to bowl. Gavaskar very cleverly slipped in a comment on Labuschagne’s pronunciation. Quoting Sunny- “a name (Labuschagne) only O’Keeffe (Kerry) can pronounce”. He might have meant in a way of good banter but the fans thought that it was a good way to get back at the Aussie commentator.
Dialling backwards- what happened earlier
During the Boxing day Test, while Mayank was batting, O’Keeffe said the Karnataka opener’s triple ton in first-class cricket came against “canteen staff”. “Apparently, he got the triple (ton) against the Railways canteen staff,” he said before joking about chefs and waiters opening the bowling for that team. He repeated his show of disrespect to Indian Cricket once again when made jokes on the names of the cricketers.
O’Keeffe found it difficult to pronounce all the Indian names throughout the series. Many foreign commentators have faced this throughout the years. But the Aussie crossed a line when Shane Warne asked his co-commentator (O’Keeffe) about his difficulty in pronouncing the names. O’Keeffe responded with, “Why would you name your kid Cheteshwar, Jadeja,” followed by subsequent laughter from his fellow commentators on air.
Following all this, Kerry O’Keeffe came out with an open letter to Indian fans stating it he never meant any “disrespect” and apologized.