No cricketer wants to be left behind as their teammates fight it out on the pitch. In fact, it has to be one of the worst feelings for a professional athlete. And so, it must especially suck if the suspension is because of a strange reason. Here are a few examples of the same.
Some of these are fair, some don’t seem to be so – but all of them are bizarre, we can agree on that.
1. Kapil Dev once got suspended apparently for trying to score too fast.
As strange as it sounds, reports suggest that this is completely true. During the 1984-85 season, Kapil Dev was made to miss a match by the management for trying to score too fast and hence getting dismissed. India lost the match and as a ‘punishment’ for his recklessness, Kapil was asked to sit out.
He mentioned the same in his autobiography and wrote that he wasn’t allowed to play because an ‘obscure point about discipline’ had to be made.
2. In 2008, Andrew Symonds was barred from playing for one month because he forgot to attend a team meeting.
Unaware that a team meeting was about to happen, Symonds went fishing. Hardly did he know that he’d be sent back home for doing the same. He was given a month’s time to show that he still cared for the Australian cricket and that was that.
3. English cricketer Ken Barrington was dropped from one Test match for scoring 137 runs in 437 minutes.
This was back in 1965 when the game was much slower. So, you can imagine exactly how slow he must have been, to be handed a ban as a ‘disciplinary measure’. Barrington was a repeat offender, though, and had amassed 256 runs in 11.5 hours in 1964 against Australia. Guess the selectors couldn’t take it anymore.
4. Shoaib Akhtar was made to fly back to Pakistan for hitting one of his teammates, Mohammad Asif, with the bat.
Later, Shoaib tried to explain himself and revealed that he was actually angry with Shahid Afridi and Asif got hit by mistake. That, as you can imagine, didn’t help his cause.
5. During the 1981-82 season, Geoff Boycott was banned from playing after he left a game against India citing ‘stomach bug’ as the reason and went to play golf.
He clarified later that the doctors had advised him to get some fresh air, and also apologised; but no one seemed to be convinced and this pretty much ended his Test career.
6. Ravindra Jadeja was handed a one-match suspension in 2017 after he earned demerit points for throwing the ball at a player and well, running in the middle of the pitch – hence damaging it.
Two things happened in separate matches but Jadeja was, in fact, asked to sit out.
7. In a much-debated decision, Kagiso Rabada was was left out of a match because of ‘excessive celebration’ according to the rules set by the ICC.
Many cricketers like Brett Lee and Michael Vaughan slammed the move, and even the general sentiment was in favour of Rabada.