He might have landed in trouble for his on-field aggressive behaviour but South African speedster Kagiso Rabada says the perception that he is short-tempered is not true and it is just passion which drives him as a bowler.
The 25-year-old was suspended for the series-deciding final Test against England earlier this year after collecting a fourth demerit point in a 24-month period for celebrating too close to visiting captain Joe Root after claiming his wicket in the third Test.
“Lot of people feel like I’ve a short temper. I don’t think so, it’s just passion. Also if you look at sledging it’s part of the game. That’s what every fast bowler does,” Rabada said during an Instagram Live chat with his IPL franchise Delhi Capitals on Friday.
“There’s no fast bowler who is going to be nice to a batter. It’s not like you being personal and telling people about their family or whatever.”
Following Rabada’s suspension, South Africa went on to lose the final Test and concede the series 1-3.
The third incident was when he used provocative language in sending off India’s Shikhar Dhawan after dismissing him during an ODI in the same year.
Rabada was also banned for accumulation of demerit points during South Africa’s tour of England in 2017.
“You celebrate the wicket and after the game, you are going to shake the guy’s hand and respect the craft. Most of the time, I’m not really aggressive on the field. But that’s just international cricket. Every player wants to be the best. That’s just the drive coming out,” he said.
The lynchpin of South African attack said it is his emotions which makes him a dangerous bowler.
“Sometimes, an emotion can ignite you. And that’s when I feel like I’m the most dangerous because that’s when I let everything loose and stop thinking and everything becomes automatic. That’s for me when I bowl my best is when I’m not thinking,” he said.
Rabada said he would have loved to bowl to former greats Sir Vivian Richards and Sachin Tendulkar among others.
“I think Kevin Pietersen, Sachin Tendulkar, Vivian Richards, and Ricky Ponting would be the batsmen I would love to bowl to…”