87-year-old Team India superfan Charulata Patel who created waves with her appearance during the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 in England, is no more. ‘Cricket Dadi’ as she came to be known, breathed her last on January 13, her ‘official’ Instagram page announced on Wednesday. Also Read - ICC World Test Championship 2021: Here's What Virat Kohli-Led Team India Needs to do Qualify For Final
The footage of the octogenarian cheering India with a tricolour flag and blowing vuvuzela during a world cup match went viral so much so that India captain Virat Kohli and his deputy Rohit Sharma met with her personally. Also Read - ICC Test Rankings: Rohit Sharma Attains Career-Best 6th Position in Batsmen's List; Ravichandran Ashwin Climbs to 3rd in Bowlers' Tally
Kohli even promised her tickets to India’s round-robin match against Sri Lanka.
“It is with a heavy heart that I inform you, our beautiful grandmother took her final breath on 13/01 at 5.30pm,” Instagram account, run by Charulata’s PR team, posted. “She was such a sweet little lady, it’s true ‘small things come in small packages’ our Dadi was a delight, she was/is truly extraordinary. She was our world. I want to thank you all for making her feel special last year, she loved the attention. A big thank you to @virat.kohli you made her feel extra special, meeting you and @rohitsharma45 was the best day of her life (she told us this on multiple occasions). May Lord Shiva bless her atman always, please all say a prayer. ❤”
The Indian cricket board, BCCI, also condoled the demise of Charulata. “#TeamIndia’s Superfan Charulata Patel ji will always remain in our hearts and her passion for the game will keep motivating us. May her soul rest in peace,” BCCI posted on its official Twitter handle on Thursday morning.
Such was Charulata’s swift rise to international stardom that soft drink giant Pepsico signed her up as their ‘swag star’ during the world cup.