Angad Bedi: Gautam Gambhir didn't think I deserved to play U-16 cricket
After Gautam Gambhir names Angad Bedi's Inside Edge character in his World XI pick, the actor calls out his double standard; reminds MP of his nepotism allegation against dad Bishan Singh Bedi
Earlier this week, former Indian cricketer Gautam Gambhir sprang a surprise on fans when he shared the World XI for 2019, on Twitter. While the list included cricket stars Virat Kohli and Ben Stokes among others, the mention of Arvind Vashishth — Angad Bedi's character from Inside Edge — raised a few eyebrows. This, especially since Gambhir, in August this year, had a war of words with the actor's father, former India skipper Bishan Singh Bedi, insinuating that the latter had tried to block Navdeep Saini's entry in the Delhi Ranji team. The exchange turned ugly when Gambhir stated that Bedi, earlier, had "pushed his undeserving son for selection", thus accusing the senior athlete of indulging in nepotism.
Bishan Singh Bedi
While Angad had maintained a dignified silence then, the actor is not too amused by Gambhir's recent tweet. "I didn't say anything back then because I didn't want to add fuel to fire. But now, he mentions Arvind Vashishth in the World XI, when he didn't think Angad Bedi was deserving of playing Under-16 cricket. I don't know if he realises that Angad and Arvind are the same people. If he feels I am talented enough [to make it to his list], I am grateful. I thank him for changing his mind," says Angad, who has played for the Delhi Under-16 and Under-19 teams.
Angad Bedi at the MIG Cricket Ground in Bandra (east) where he represented Delhi U-16 against Saurashtra U-16 in the three-day Vijay Merchant Trophy quarter-final held from January 6 to 8, 1997. Pic/mid-day archives
On the public war of words that ensued between his father and Gambhir, Angad does not mince words as he says that the latter's tweet was "distasteful". "I value my father's contribution to Indian cricket. He was captain for four years [1975-76 and 1978-79] and has led his life with integrity. When we were growing up, our coaches taught us that we don't need to [necessarily] agree with our seniors, but we don't need to disrespect them either." Bedi was India's finest left-arm spinner in the late 1960s and 1970s. He claimed 266 wickets in 67 Test matches.
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