It has been a horrible year as far as player behaviour is concerned. Some prominent cricketers have set poor examples with their behaviour on the field, be it Nathan Lyon’s antics after running AB de Villiers out in the first Test in Durban or the most serious altercations like the one between David Warner and Quinton de Kock in Durban that almost led to a brawl.
South African quick Kagiso Rabada has been collecting demerit points and suspensions left, right and centre. Bangladesh took it to a new level during the ongoing T20 tri-series with skipper Shakib Al Hasan and team-mate Nurul Hasan fined for their behavior during a tense chase against Sri Lanka.
With cricketers not putting their best foot forward at the international level, two incidents in the ongoing Pakistan Super League provide a welcome relief in these times of aggressive behaviour and over-the-top celebrations.
SHAHEEN REFUSES TO CELEBRATE AFRIDI SR’S WICKET
Lahore Qalandar’s 17-year-old pace sensation Shaheen Afridi pulled out of a wicket celebration after uprooting the middle-stump of Karachi Kings and Pakistan star Shahid Afridi. Shaheen later tweeted: “There is only one Shahid Afridi in the cricket arena. And this is the least you can do to honour the man for his services to cricket, Pakistan and humanity.”
There is only one Shahid Afridi in the cricket arena. And this is the least you can do to honor the Man for his services to cricket, Pakistan and humanity. Duaaain @SAfridiOfficial bhai!#Respect #Legend https://t.co/re6nlQJuVM— Shaheen Shah Afridi (@iShaheenAfridi) March 12, 2018
AFRIDI ABORTS MISBAH DISMISSAL CELEBRATION
Karachi Kings’ Shahid Afridi had attracted criticism for his harsh send-off to Multan Sultans’ 19-year-old batsman Saif Badar after dismissing him. But a day later, another teenager Shaheen decided to take the high road by refusing to celebrate Shahid’s wicket.
It was now the turn of Shahid to ‘pay it forward’. Against Islamabad United on Friday, Shahid bowled former Pakistan captain Misbah-ul Haq and then aborted his trademark wicket celebration. That’s one trend cricket fans hope catches on.
With the two eliminators and the final set to take place back in Pakistan on home soil (Karachi on March 25), international recruits in the PSL have been allowed to take their own call on whether they would like to play in Lahore and Karachi with many of them opting not to.
“I blame the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) for this sad situation. I know the board will not like my comments. But in future, only those overseas players should be included in the player draft who commit to also play in Pakistan if required by their franchises,” he told the media in Sharjah.
Moin Khan “the Pakistan Cricket Board should not sign players for the Pakistan Super League who are not willing to play in Pakistan” #PSL2018
— Saj Sadiq (@Saj_PakPassion) March 16, 2018
The former wicket-keeper batsman believes fans back in Pakistan will be deprived of a golden opportunity to see some high-level cricket.
“The franchises pay them well to play in the PSL. But when they refuse to travel to Pakistan it upsets the balance of the concerned franchises and also deprives our people of seeing competitive cricket,” he stated.
Moin Khan “cricket enthusiasts deserve to see top players playing in our own country. If players aren’t comfortable playing in Pakistan they shouldn’t be included in the player-draft and preference should be given to those players who are willing to play in Pakistan” #PSL2018
— Saj Sadiq (@Saj_PakPassion) March 16, 2018
Moin urged the PCB to only pick players who are willing to play in Pakistan in the future for the betterment of the league.
“I am more concerned over Pakistan cricket and the PSL future. We can’t have this happening all the time,” he quipped.
The former Pakistan man also expressed his unhappiness with the umpiring standards in the PSL. He made no qualms about the fact that Mohammad Hafeez had not been given permission to bowl in the competition while Sunil Narine has been allowed to, despite being reported for a suspect bowling action on Thursday night.
Quetta Gladiators have made the finals of both the previous editions of the PSL and will be aiming to make it three in a row after finishing with 10 points from their matches in the league stages. They currently sit in second spot in the table.
The 29-year-old, currently plying his trade with the Lahore Qalandars in the Pakistan Super League (PSL), was reported for a suspect action in Thursday night’s encounter with the Quetta Gladiators at Sharjah.
The Caribbean man has now been placed on the warning list, meaning he will still be allowed to bowl in the competition.
“Narine has been reported for a suspected illegal bowling action during Wednesday’s PSL Twenty20 game between Lahore Qalandars and Quetta Gladiators at Sharjah,” a Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) statement said.
“The match officials’ report on Narine’s bowling action will be sent to Cricket West Indies (CWI) and he will have to go through the process that is followed by the CWI, for suspected illegal bowling actions,” the statement added.
This is not the first time that the mystery spinner has been in the limelight over his bowling action. Narine was twice reported for a suspect bowling action in 2014, during the now defunct Champions League in India.
📰 Sunil Narine has been reported for a suspected illegal bowling action during match between Lahore Qalandars & Quetta Gladiators at Sharjah.
Narine has now been placed on the warning list and may continue to be selected to play and bowl for his team in the #HBLPSL. pic.twitter.com/DndD6hZphW
— PakistanSuperLeague (@thePSLt20) 15 March 2018
The West Indies bowler had been withdrawn from the 2015 ICC World Cup as a precaution and only returned to international cricket after remodelling his action in a series against Sri Lanka in November.
There, he was reported once again and was subsequently suspended from international cricket after biomechanical tests found his action to rotate beyond the 15 degrees permissible limit by the ICC.
Then the No1 ranked ODI and T20I bowler, Narine missed the 2016 ICC World Twenty20 due to his suspension. After working on his action, he was eventually cleared to bowl again before the start of the 2016 Indian Premier League before being now called up in the PSL.
The spinner had been retained by IPL franchise Kolkata Knight Riders ahead of this year’s edition which gets underway in April. The outfit will be hoping that their star-man’s woes with his bowling action are only temporary.