Although Cricket is fondly known as the “gentlemen’s game”, the spirit of competition and the thirst of winning sometimes expose the evil aspect of the sport. Cricket officially, as a sport is around 140 years old and there have been a number of such circumstances where the winning aspirations are dominant enough such that they bring out the evil side of the game.
The recent ball-tampering controversy in the Australia-South Africa test series is the latest entrant in the list.
With all the controversy and buzz regarding the controversy steaming up, we thought that it is the perfect time to script 5 such incidents.
- Waqar Younis against Sri Lanka(2002)
Waqar Younis is one of the greatest players to have ever played the sport. The former Pakistan fast bowler was charged with ball tampering in 2002.
The TV cameras suggested that the legendary speedster was caught lifting the seam out of the ball. As a punishment, he was handed a ban for one game.
With it, he became the first ever cricketer to be handed a ban for ball tampering.
The other suspect, Azhar Mahmood was fined 30% of his match fee. He was alleged of scratching the ball
- Rahul Dravid against Zimbabwe(2004)
Rahul Dravid is considered to be one of the most gentle to have played the game. Former Indian Captain was accused of ball tampering during an ODI.
He was fined for rubbing an object on one side of the ball in order to generate more swing.
Though Dravid always kept denying the allegations, he was fined 50% of his match fee by the match referee.
- Stuart Broad and James Anderson against South Africa(2010)
England’s most successful and one of the best fast bowling pairs in the world, James Anderson and Stuart Broad were accused of ball tampering while the former appeared to be picking at the seam, the latter stepped on the ball in a test game against South Africa.
The duo excused trying to brush aside all the allegations. Broad said that he was too lazy to pick the ball and Anderson asserted that he was playing with the ball absent-mindedly.
Neither Player was charged as both of them got away with all the allegations.
- Shahid Afridi against Australia(2010)
Although former Pakistan all-rounder and captain was involved in many a controversy during his 20-year-old international career, the ball tampering incident in 2010 is biggest of all.
Afridi was caught chewing on the ball, in the TV cameras. He was eventually suspended for T20I games.The incident occurred in an ODI game at WACA which Pakistan lost by 2 wickets.
Afridi later apologized for the incident.
- Faf du Plessis against Australia (2016)
The South African captain was accused of ball-tampering in 2016 where he was seen chewing mint and then using saliva trying to shine the ball.
Faf du Plessis tried to reason for his innocence but was eventually fined by the match referee 100% of his match fees.
The good thing for the South African captain was that he escaped a suspension and also came back strongly by scoring a century in the next game.
So, it really seems that Ball-tampering is not a crime but getting caught is .
What are your thoughts on this issue? Tell me in the comments section below.