Cricket is widely known as the gentleman’s game. So, of course, when ungentlemanly behavior occurs, fans become furious. But what exactly does it mean to behave in an ungentlemanly fashion? In this article, we will go over controversies, scandals, and squabbles which have gained a lot of coverage in the cricket realm.
Hansie Cronje’s Match-Fixing
Hansie Cronje was somewhat of an idol in South Africa. He captained the national team in the 90s, and attained worldwide fame. However, it all came crashing down when, just before the turn of the century, Hansie Cronje confessed to accepting money in order to fix matches. Understandably, fans, detractors, and professionals were pissed. Cronje, as well as his accomplices, were banned from playing, and many of them received criminal charges. The scandal also resulted in many reforms within cricket management.
In 2021, Netflix released the documentary mini-series, Bad Sport, detailing the rise and fall of Hansie Cronje. The documentary is worth watching for any cricket fan. It does not pull punches, nor does it sugar coat what really happened. It is an excellent way to learn more about the situation, if you find yourself interested.
The Australian Ball-Tampering Scandal
From the 90s, we hop over to the 2010s. In 2018, Australia and South Africa were facing off in a Test match, when an Australian player was caught on camera doing something duplicitous. Cameron Bancroft was caught using sandpaper to rough up the side of the ball in order to make it swing in an opposite direction.
The scandal gained mass media coverage, and resulted in bans, not just of Bancroft, but also Steve Smith and David Warner. The player, as well as the team received a lot of criticism from the international cricket community. Of course, Bancroft apologized for his behavior, but by that time, the damage was done.
Pakistan’s Spot-Fixing Scandal
In 2010, Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif, and Mohammad Amir were accused of purposefully bowling no-balls, in collaboration with a bookmaker. The case spurred on an investigation into Pakistani cricket and corruption, which is still ongoing to this day.
The players involved were banned from playing, and they all received criminal charges. The bookie himself was apprehended by Pakistani police. Even 13 years later, the controversy spurred on by this scandal remains fresh in the mind of many Pakistani cricket fans.
The Indian Premier League Spot-Fixing Scandal
Three years after the Pakistan spot-fixing scandal, India had one of their own. The IPL is one of the most popular, if not the most popular cricket leagues in the world, drawing in tons of punters. The number of wagers on cricket has only increased with time, in large part thanks to https://sportsbet.io/ and similar betting sites.
So, you can imagine the outrage that occurred in 2013, when the IPL received accusations of spot-fixing. Three notable players competing for the Indian Premier League team, Rajasthan Royals were accused and arrested for collaborating with bookies in spot-fixing. The players, S. Sreesanth, Ankeet Chavan, and Ajit Chandila faced criminal charges, along with their bookie collaborators. The team’s owner was also found guilty and faced a few charges himself.
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