Cricket is branded to be a gentleman’s game. Sophisticated, exciting and jaw gripping, cricket has managed to gain millions of fans who are extremely dedicated towards game. But, what happens when one of the most sought after sport ends up having its own set of inglorious drama and controversy?
Here are the 8 most shameful incidents we wish didn’t happen in the history of cricket.
1. THE EDEN GARDEN BREAKOUT – 1967
On the eve of New Years, the crowd at Eden Gardens lost their cool, bringing the entire match to a halt. On January 1st 1967, the Indian and the West Indies cricket team faced a crowd whose actions brought the entire match to a standstill. The stadium being extremely jam-packed began getting ill tempered and loud. Soon, the crowd made their way into the ground causing utter chaos. What followed were Lathi charges by the police and counter attacks by the mob. Amongst the entire hullabaloo, Conrad Hunte climbed the terrace, amidst the fire and bloodshed to retrieve the West Indian flag from being burnt. The incident is remembered up to this day, making every cricket fan cringe.
2. THE INFAMOUS UNDERARM BOWLING INCIDENT – 1981
The last few minutes of the one day international cricket match between Australia and New Zealand had turned out to be a grave disappointment to all the cricket lovers out there. It was the last ball and New Zealand required six runs to win against Australia. It was then that the world witnessed Australian captain, Greg Chappell instructing his brother, Trevor to bowl an underarm. Trevor bowled an underarm and Australia won. This was not only considered unfair by many, but it was also considered an unsporting move which did not compliment the tradition and belief of cricket.
3. INDIA – SRI LANKA WORLD CUP CHAOS – 1996
On March 1996, the India – Sri Lanka World Cup witnessed a filthy situation. With Sri Lanka playing brilliantly and India losing seven wickets, the crowd ended up getting extremely enraged. The crowd was seemingly disappointed with the Indian cricketers and began throwing glass bottles at them. The game unfortunately had to be called off. An attempt to restart the match later proved futile and Lloyd awarded the game to Sri Lanka by default.
4. RICKY PONTING AND JAVAGAL SRINATH – 1999
During India’s tour of Australia, there was an awkward one sided faceoff between Ricky Pointing and Javagal Srinath. Srinath being a fast bowler bowled a bouncer at the Australian cricketer who missed the ball, which unfortunately hit him on his helmet. Srinath was apologetic, but the incident rubbed off on the wrong foot with Ricky Pointing and was seen on camera verbally storming at the Indian bowler. The audiences however, weren’t quite impressed with his behaviour.
5. THE HANSIE CRONJE MATCH FIXING EPISODE – 2000
Hansie Cronje on April 7th, 2000, was accused and charged for match fixing with South Africa against India during the ODI’s. Although he initially denied the allegation, Hansie later confessed to being dishonest and receiving $10,000 to $ 15,000 for providing information and forecast, during the one day series in India. On 11 October, Cronje was banned from playing or coaching cricket for life. Sadly, on June 1, 2002, Cronje died when the light cargo plane in which he was travelling in, crashed into the mountains due to the pilot’s negligence.
6. MIKE DENNESS AND THE INDIAN AFFAIR – 2001
During the Port Elizabeth test between South Africa and India, Mike Denness managed to cause a huge controversy by sanctioning not one, but six Indian players with various offences. The players included Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag, Sourav Ganguly, Harbhajan Singh, Shiv Sunder Das and Deep Dasgupta. He was accused of being unjust and discriminatory towards the Indians when he failed to explain his actions at a press conference.
7. THE PAKISTAN TEAM WALK OFF – 2006
In 2006, a test match between Pakistan and England ended up being extremely controversial when the Pakistan team was accused of tampering with the ball. The umpires accused the team to have tampered with the quarter seam of the ball. The team decided to protest against this by delaying their return to the field in the evening. The umpires however, ended up awarding the game to England in accordance with the laws of cricket.
8. MARLON SAMUELS BOOKIE SCANDAL – 2008
On April 2008, West Indian cricketer Marlon Samuels was accused by the Indian police of giving out team information to an Indian bookie. Although he denied it, a taped conversation between Samuels and the bookie provided by the police proved him to be guilty. He was banned by the International Cricket Council from playing for two whole years. Samuel however continues to maintain his innocence regarding this.