Updated: September 18, 2020 12:03:50 pm
The Indian Premier League (IPL) has a history of various controversies and fights and perhaps the first major such incident involved Sourav Ganguly and Shane Warne in the match between Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) and Rajasthan Royals (RR) in its inaugural season.
KKR was set a target of 197 courtesy of attacking half-centuries from RR’s Swapnil Asnodkar and Yusuf Pathan. Disciplined bowling by the Rajasthan quicks left the Knight Riders struggling at 106/3 in the 13th over. With the required run-rate creeping up, Ganguly and David Hussey (who were in the middle) began to go for the big hits.
In the last ball of the 13th over, Ganguly pulled a shorter one from Pathan and hit it towards the deep mid-wicket region where Graeme Smith ran in and took a low catch.
As the Rajasthan camp erupted in celebrations, Ganguly remained unmoved and requested onfield umpire GA Pratapkumar to refer to it to the TV umpire Asad Rauf. Replays proved to be inconclusive and Ganguly was given the benefit of doubt by the third umpire. This enraged Warne as he charged at Ganguly for not abiding by the spirit of the game.
“Justice will get you, Sourav. Justice will,” the stump microphone picked Warne words to Ganguly when the latter reached the non-strikers end in the next over bowled by Warne.
But the story does not end there. After the match, Warne lodged a complaint to match referee Farokh Engineer which also mentioned that Ganguly had apparently made Warne and his team wait before the toss, a dose identical to what he had dished out to Steve Waugh seven years prior.
“I was disappointed at the start. While batting we waited for five minutes under the hot sun and they were not anywhere to be seen,” Warne was fuming after the game.
Ganguly also came down heavy on Warne for criticising him and told Times Now “Is complaining against a dropped catch against the spirit of the game?”.
“We just need to look at Warne’s career to understand that he has no moral right to teach what the spirit of the game is. I just want to laugh at what Warne is saying. He should not be talking about the spirit of the game.
“I told him (umpire Pratapkumar) the catch was not taken cleanly. Referring to the third umpire was his decision,” added Ganguly.
Sourav Ganguly and Shane Warne have been fined 10% of their match fees, while Pratap Kumar, the on-field umpire, has been suspended for a game
All is well between Ganguly and Warne now and the duo shares a cordial bond. On the commentary, they are a treat to the masses when they come together. From friendly banters to relaying their playing day’s rivalry, all of it is remembered with fun and laughter.
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