Why this 8-foot-tall cricket fan’s short visit from Kabul to Lucknow was ‘memorable’
LUCKNOW: There were not many to cheer his home team during the Afghanistan-West Indies ODI in Lucknow on Wednesday, but this giant fan who had come all the way from Kabul to boost the morale of Afghan cricketers caught the attention of most.
Standing tall at 8ft 2 inches, Sher Khan was disappointed with his team’s 7-wicket defeat and also shared with TOI his colossal struggle to find an accommodation in the city on Tuesday until police came to his help.
“Hotels straight away refused to check me in, probably because of my height… They said they lacked infrastructThere were not many to cheer his home team during the Afghanistan-West Indies ODI in Lucknow on Wednesday, but this giant fan who had come all the way from Kabul to boost the morale of Afghan cricketers caught the attention of most.
ure to accommodate someone like me,” said Sher Khan who suffers from a rare medical condition called gigantism in which the growth hormone functions abnormally.
The man, who reminds one of the great Khali for his looks and hairstyle, eventually landed up at Naka police station where cops helped him find a place to stay. “The problem of Sher Khan and that of hotel owners were genuine in their respective ways. The solution came when one of the hotels volunteered to help,” SHO Sujeet Dubey said. Police, on their part, verified documents of the special guest to convince the hotel owner.
Hotel employees were both intrigued and worried while hosting Sher Khan. “People kept visiting our hotel only to see him… The presence of mediapersons added to the hullabaloo. We were worried because our guest was being disturbed,” said a waiter who looked after Khan.
The milling crowd outside the hotel prompted police to escort Sher Khan on Wednesday to the Ekana stadium where the international match was being played. “I am used to such attention, but it becomes a problem after a point of time,” a visibly shy Khan told TOI.
The cricket buff from Kabul said this was his first time in Lucknow, but he had been to India before.
“My visit to Lucknow will remain memorable because of the dichotomy. After I was denied stay at hotels, I felt weird about this city otherwise known for its hospitality. I was compelled to change my mind after police and a hotel owner helped me,” he said.
Khan added that he also loved the experience at the stadium when cricket fans from the city cheered for his team with him.