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Tuesday, Sep 27, 2022

Was tied, gagged and forgotten the whole night by Andrew Symonds and James Franklin, says Yuzvendra Chahal

Leg-spinner Yuzi Chahal revealed a horrifying incident when one of the drunk teammates at Mumbai Indians left him hanging from a 15th-floor balcony.

Yuzvendra Chahal, Chahal"Chahal has more international experience. He is the most experience leg-spinner in the country and in this tournament" stated by Malinga (IPL | PTI)

Yuzvendra Chahal has recounted couple of horrifying incidents from his Mumbai Indians days. The first episode is when he was tied, gagged, and forgotten the whole night by the Australians Andrew Symonds and James Franklin. He doesn’t identify the player in the second incident but talks about how a “drunk teammate” hung him from the 15th floor. Meanwhile, Robin Uthappa too shared an unsavoury episode of bullying from an unnamed Mumbai Indians person who forced him to sign the transfer papers with a threat that Uthappa “won’t play in the playing XI unless he signs”.

The Symonds-Franklin episode dates back to 2011, says Chahal. “It was in 2011 after wining champions League in a Chennai hotel. He [Andrew Symonds] had drunk a lot of “fruit juice” (laughs). I was with him, only. James Franklin and he tied my hands and legs, and said ‘now you have to open’. They were in so much masti they have taped my mouth and forgot all about me. Party got over and in the morning, when a cleaner came, he saw me and freed me. They asked from when have I been here like this and I told them, ‘from the night itself’.

And when the podcast host asks him if Symonds and Franklin apologised to him in the morning, Chahal says, “No, they said sometimes when they drink “juice” so much, they can’t handle it and they can’t remember anything”.

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On Thursday, he revealed details about the second episode that dates back to 2013.

“I never told this story, from today, everyone will know. I never shared this. This dates back to 2013 when I was with Mumbai Indians, we had a match in Bangalore. There was a get-together after that. So, there was a player who was very drunk, I won’t say his name. He was very drunk, he was looking at me for a long time and he just called me and he took me outside and he hung me on the balcony,” Chahal said in a video put up by Rajasthan Royals.

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“And my hands were around him, like this (behind the neck). Had I lost my grip, I was on the 15th floor. Suddenly many people who were there came and they handled it. I kind of fainted, they gave me water. Then I realized how responsible we need to be when we go anywhere. So, this was one incident where I felt I made a narrow escape. Had there been slightest of mistakes, I would’ve fallen down,” he added.

Couple of days ago, Robin Uthappa, now with Chennai Super Kings, shared his unpleasant tale from his time with Mumbai Indians.

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It dates back to 2009, when he was about to be transferred from Mumbai Indians to RCB. Uthappa says he didn’t want to be transferred and took his time to sign the transfer papers. That’s when a person from Mumbai Indians (he doesn’t identify) bullied him.

“Someone from the Mumbai Indians, I am not going to say the name. But they said to me, “Listen if you don’t sign these transfer papers, you will not get to play in the XI for Mumbai Indians. So you might as well sign it and get transferred. I signed it eventually,” Uthappa told in R Ashwin’s YouTube channel.

Uthappa talks about how that episode combined with a “personal problems” and had him spiralling towards depression. “I was one of the first players in IPL, along with Zaheer Khan and Manish Pandey, to be transferred to another team. It was very difficult as my loyalities completely were with Mumbai Indians … I didn’t want to leave. It happened one month before the [2009] IPL …

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“I was also going through something personal at that point in time. And that pushed me further into whatever was going through emotionally. I spiralled completely into depression in my time with RCB. I didn’t play any match well that season. The only time I scored in that IPL was against Mumbai Indians. I played thinking, ‘I have to do something this match. I have to do well.”

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In 2018, in a show Breakfast with Champions, Yuzvindra Chahal spoke a lot about his friendship with Symonds and how he is still in touch with him and goes fishing with him when he visits Australia. “Whenever I go to Australia, I love to go fishing with him. He is a great host. His wife even learnt how to cook Butter Chicken for me by following recipes on the internet. When I went there to meet them, there was Butter Chicken ready for me,” he had said. However, the three incidents – two shared by Chahal and one by Uthappa – has turned the spotlight on the unsavoury culture in Mumbai Indians in the past.

First published on: 08-04-2022 at 10:00:44 am
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