Maria Sharapova has upset Indian cricket fans by admitting she had never heard of Sachin Tendulkar.
Tendulkar was in the Royal Box at Wimbledon on Saturday alongside David Beckham watching Sharapova’s third-round win over American Alison Riske.
When Sharapova was asked if she was aware Tendulkar had watched her play she said she didn’t know who the Indian cricket icon was.
Sharapova was asked: ‘Sachin Tendulkar was the other person who came in at the same time as David. Do you know who Sachin is?’
The five-time Grand Slam winner replied “I don’t.”
Passionate Tendulkar fans have subsequently taken over her Facebook page to help her become familiar with their idol.
The Russian’s every post has been littered with comments – some abusive – referring to Sachin, with many simply posting the former Indian batsman’s phenomenal run-scoring statistics.
By now the Russian beauty knows Tendulkar made his test debut aged 16, went on to represent India for nearly 24 years. He is the only player to have scored one hundred international centuries, the first batsman to score a double century in a One Day International, the only player to complete more than 30,000 runs in international cricket.
Before long ‘Who is Maria Sharapova?’ was trending on Twitter as Sachin’s adoring fans hit back.
To add insult, Sharapova spoke glowingly of Beckham.
”I’ve actually met him a couple of times at events in L.A and in London. He is a great guy. Besides being an incredible football player, he has done so much in his career, having a family, maintaining so many things off court.”
Sharapova, Wimbledon champion aged just 17, was dumped out of this year’s tournament in the fourth round by German Angelique Kerber on Tuesday.