Abhinandan, PSL 2023: Indian pilot Abhinandan’s picture displayed on the screen during a match between Lahore Qalandars and Islamabad United where the Shadab Khan-led Islamabad lost by a whopping 110 runs after conceding 200 runs in the first innings.
Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman is a former Indian Air Force (IAF) fighter pilot who became widely known in February 2019 when he was captured by the Pakistani military during an aerial dogfight between Indian and Pakistani fighter jets in the aftermath of the 2019 Pulwama terrorist attack in India.
He was flying a MiG-21 Bison aircraft when he engaged in a dogfight with a Pakistani F-16 jet. During the exchange, his aircraft was hit and he was forced to eject into Pakistani territory, where he was captured by the Pakistani army. He was held in custody for nearly 60 hours before being released by Pakistan as a “gesture of peace” on March 1, 2019.
Abhinandan’s courage and bravery during his captivity, as well as his calm and composed demeanor in a widely circulated video released by the Pakistani military, earned him widespread admiration and respect in India and around the world.
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Wing Commander Abhinandan’s picture appears during a match in PSL
While in Pakistani custody, Abhinandan was asked about the tea served to him by Pakistani officials, to which he replied, “the tea was fantastic.” The Pakistani authorities released a video of the exchange, and since then, the phrase has been used by Pakistanis to create memes for reasons known only to them.
But this time, It was used on an occasion where such things don’t suit well. During the match, an image of the Indian Air Force hero holding a cup of tea was displayed on the giant screen during the mid-game break.
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Earlier, The outdated banter was used by Lahore Qalandars‘ social media accounted where they tweeted a photograph of Mohommad Hussai sipping tea with the caption “Ye tu “Tea is Fantastic” hogya”.
In December 2022, a Pakistani journalist questioned Ben Stokes, “How was the tea?” in an attempt to humiliate and mock the Indian forces, echoing the same exact question they asked Wing Commander Abhinandan while he was in Pakistani custody.
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