Why did Zimbabwe and Pakistan fans exchange barbs and memes on social media after Zimbabwe defeated Pakistan by just one run in a thrilling match at the ICC T20 World Cup in Perth on Thursday, October 27?
In a (partly) good-humoured way, several Zimbabwe fans saw this as vindication for Pakistan’s having sent its Mr Bean lookalike, Asif Mohammad, to perform in the African country in 2016. Back then, the comedian who masqueraded as the popular comedic character Mr Bean – made famous on screen by the English actor Rowan Atkinson – earned less than rave reviews.
In fact, even before Zimbabwe’s match with Pakistan, fans had been demanding revenge.
After Zimbabwe’s win, the country’s president Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa tweeted his congratulations and suggested Pakistan send ‘the real Mr Bean’ next time.
Pakistan PM Shehbaz Sharif tweeted his repartee.
Eventually, the performer Asif Muhammad himself tweeted a video response. Dressed as Mr Bean in the legendary brown suit and holding a teddy bear, he said, ‘I Love You Zimbabwe’.