Cricket is called a gentleman’s game, where ideally the only battles are between the ball and the bat. Ideally. But when the stakes are high, the players who wear their hearts on their sleeves get into ugly fights on field. There are many instances in the history of such on field cricket fights. Here’s a compilation of the 5 most heated battles between two sides.
[If you are good at lipreading, the videos are bonus for you]
#5 Dada teaches Russel Arnold a lesson
Dada is known as a man of passion; never coy from a modest dosage of dadagiri. During the 2002 Champions trophy final, when Russel Arnold stepped on the pitch while trying to steal a quick one of Anil Kumble; Dada asked Arnold not to run on the pitch. One of India’s astute cricket captain, Sourav Ganguly knew that Sri Lanka had top spinners in its ranks and Arnold running on the pitch would help the spinners in the second innings. But when Arnold didn’t listen to Sourav’s friendly advice and picked up a fight with the Indian skipper, Dada decided, it was time to take the law in his own hands. It took the umpires to separate them. Dada… You may never win the gentleman of the year award, but you’ll always win the hearts of all the bellicose fans.
#4 Inzamam vs. The crowd
The only case of a physical between an on-field cricketer and crowd, the sleeping giant took offense about an Indian spectator insulting his family pack abs. The Indian fan called Inzamam Alu (potato) and the rest, as they say, is history. After he was allayed with promises of 10 Kg Biryani, he calmed and sauntered back to his position
#3 Gambhir- Afridi Clash
When India and Pakistan enter the field, the purists order aspirins to keep themselves calm. No love is lost(or born) as the passion reeks to its zenith. Perhaps the most famous of all India-Pakistan cricket fights; apparently some of the people who could lip read were traumatized after the video was telecasted. With Afridi talking trash to Gautam Gambhir, Gambhir Jabbed one back into afridi. This was followed by some more ‘small-talks” from both the sides.
#2 Dennis Lilee vs Javed Miandad
Javed Miandad isn’t someone whom Deepak Chopra will cite as an example of calm temprament. No list of greatest fights in cricket is complete without this Pakistani ‘Gentleman’. It started when Dennis Lilee barged into Miandad’s run. After an array of verbal rants, Lilee did a 80′s style side shuffle dance and kicked Miandad. The only thing that spared Lilee’s skull from being macerated by Miandad’s bat was the Umpire standing in between.
#1 Balaji Rao (Canada) vs. Pakistan
There’s a reason we chose this as the number one in the list of greatest fights in Cricket. Canada are a minnows in the cricketing world whereas Pakistan belong to the goliath class of International cricket. Balaji Rao is not a classified batsman; whereas Umar Gul is one of the dreaded fast bowlers. Yet Rao roared back when pushed beyond the line. This shows the new era where the players are not intimidated by reputation anymore. Cricket is a gentleman’s game; had it not been, this would have probably made to the wisden hall of fame.
Do you remember any such cricket fights not covered in this article? Share in the comments section.