NBA star Kevin Durant on Saturday, August 12, 2017, apologised for calling India a 'rough' country which is '20 years behind' the world but claimed his comments were 'taken out of context'.
After returning from his maiden India visit last month, Durant spoke about the trip in an interview with The Athletic website. The comments backfired and Durant was forced to issue an apology.
The 2017 NBA Most Valuable Player (MVP) took to twitter to issue his apology.
"Sorry that my comments about India were taken out of context. I'm grateful for the time I've got to spend there, and I'm p***** about how my comments came off, that's my fault, should've worded that better," the Golden State Warrior player posted a message on his official twitter handle.
During the three-day trip, Kevin Durant set a Guinness record for the biggest basketball lesson, he met Bollywood actors and top sportspersons but it was the three-and-a-half hours' drive to the Taj Mahal that left the lasting impression.
In the interview, Durant said that India is 20 years behind the world in terms of knowledge and experience and the country is just a bunch of underprivileged people who want to learn basketball.
"It's a country that's 20 years behind in terms of knowledge and experience. You see cows in the street, monkeys running around everywhere, hundreds of people on the side of the road, a million cars and no traffic violations. Just a bunch of underprivileged people there and they want to learn how to play basketball. That was really, really dope to me," Durant was quoted as saying by The Athletic in an interview.
But he claimed that he only spoke about his imagination of India and what he actually saw after landing in New Delhi.
“As I was driving up to the Taj Mahal, like I said, I thought that this would be holy ground, super protected, very very clean. And as I’m driving up, it’s like, s***, this used to remind me of some neighbourhoods I would ride through as a kid,” Durant had said in his interview.
"I spoke about the difference between my imagination and reality there in Delhi and about where the game is compared to the rest of the world," he tweeted.
"No offence from this side. I'm coming back out there for more camps and cool s***. Sorry."
(With inputs from PTI)