Like many other Indians, I love the game of cricket. Like many others, the patriotism in me peaks each time India win a championship. Like a crazy fan, I have passionately lived and breathed cricket, cheered for them after a victory and cribbed about how bad they played when they lost.
Today I dare to write a piece on my most favourite game and the men who adorn the blue jersey.
There is a lot of hullabaloo around Hardik Pandya's conduct on Karan Johar's chat show 'Koffee with Karan'. He was trolled on social media over his misogynistic remarks. The apology was treated with nothing but disdain. Whatever is 'got carried away with the format of the show'. This not only irked social media but BCCI too which suspended both Pandya and Rahul from all ODIs against Australia.
This coming from an international cricketer of his repute. An all-rounder, who has performed exceptionally well with both the bat and the ball. Would have expected some gentlemanly behaviour off the field too.
There is a lot of hullabaloo around Hardik Pandya's conduct on Karan Johar's chat show 'Koffee with Karan'. (Photo: Screengrab/ Koffee with Karan)
But is Hardik Pandya the only cricketer to do so? Well, no.
Our very own captain 'aggressive', who boldly said that Indian cricket team does not endorse Pandya's or Rahul's views, was seen misbehaving on field himself. He got trolled heavily after his on-field spat with Australia captain Tim Paine. Are we considering sledging Australian cricketers as 'healthy conversation'.
His bat already speaks volumes. First Indian captain to win a Test series in Australia, fastest to 10000 ODI runs, 213 matches, 205 innings, first Indian cricketer and the first captain of any country, to hit three consecutive ODI centuries. So why the misconduct?
If we look back in 2008, former India cricketer Harbhajan Singh allegedly called Andrew Symonds a monkey during SCG match. Though no action was taken against him. But there have been cricketers from other countries too, who have been handed suspension due to on-field rash behaviour.
South African pacer Kagiso Rabada was suspended for two Test matches after a brush in with visiting skipper Steve Smith during the second Test in Port Elizabeth. Australian bowlers have been as guilty as the South African bowlers. David Warner was once seen celebrating ABD's dismissal by taunting Aiden Markram, who was the other batsman on the crease.
But Hardik Pandya is not the only bad boy of cricket. (Photo: AP)
Sri Lankan all-rounder Danushka Gunathilaka was suspended from international cricket. Gunathilaka and his friend took two Norwegian women to the hotel where the player was staying in Colombo. One of the women later accused the second man, a British passport-holder of Sri Lankan origin, of raping her and police arrested him.
There are some cricketers infamous for their rash behaviour. David Warner a phenomenal cricketer, is also known for his bad behaviour on and off the field, Mitchell Johnson is not only an aggressive player, but aggression has got the better of him on my occasions. Kieron Pollard has regularly been in the news for notorious incidents. James Anderson leads the list of rash England players, especially when it comes to sledging. And the list endless... All these players are big names in the gentleman's game but are definitely not gentlemen.