Andrew Symonds’ IPL Sledging

Andrew Symonds’ talents were on full display during the IPL final between the Deccan Chargers and the Royal Challengers Bangalore, and I’m not just talking about his batting and bowling.

For what looked like a good minute, Symonds went after Manish Pandey, the 19-year-old batsman who briefly lighted the IPL world with some great late performances. I don’t exactly what Symonds said, but he just kept walking after poor Pandey, who did nothing wrong other than show up to bat. (You can watch the exchange here.) I completely agreed with commentator Harsha Bhogle, who said Symonds should pick on someone his own size. “He’s only a boy,” Bhogle noted.

It’s true that I don’t like Symonds. I started to think twice about him after his recent travails (alcoholism, bad form, losing place in the national squad, violence), but then came this latest unprovoked bout of bad temper. I don’t care for sledging all that much, even if it does yield exciting moments (like the infamous Venkatesh Prasad-Aamir Sohail clash). I think the much ballyhooed “spirit” of the game thing is important (even in Twenty20) and that verbal abuse should count as much against a player as physical abuse.

Don’t get me wrong: throw a glare to a batsman after you’ve just bounced him, or tease and prod if you must with a smile (as Brett Lee does), but don’t run around another player just because you think he might be vulnerable.


11 thoughts on “Andrew Symonds’ IPL Sledging

  1. joe says:

    Your so racist! I bet if Symmonds had been blond and cute like Lee you would have had no problem with him. I notice you love blondie cutie Broad as well.

    I”m sure if he’d been Indian, you’d have given him every excuse under the sun.

    Face it – you just hate us blacks.

    • duckingbeamers says:

      Actually, Joe, I recently wrote a note saying that Stuart Broad wasn’t all that great, especially compared to Australian fast bowlers. Secondly, I’ve often criticized Indians, like Harbhajan Singh and Gautam Gambhir, for their onfield antics. Thirdly, I like Lee because he often smiles, congratulates and winks at his opponents, which I find quite refreshing. (And no, I don’t think he’s all that cute.) Finally, I’ve gone back and forth on Symonds: I don’t like him because I think he’s too quick to talk during matches (as just shown in the IPL final), but I also like him because he’s an immensely complex character who clearly feels very angry with Cricket Australia and his teammates. I’m really not sure any of this is compelling enough to brand me a racist. Thanks for the comment though!

  2. Amy says:

    Funny joke that, Joe.

  3. farkandfunk says:

    Interesting post.

    I think a little bit of gamesmanship provides a good twist to any competitive game; it’s just the degree of it and the situation in the game which adds to the complexity and , more often than not, clouds our view of the situation.

    I think in the case of Symonds, Gambhir, Harbhajan – now – they seem to know that it might work sometimes, and it might backfire completely at other times(I think we can all safely exclude Sreesanth from this conversation as he doesn’t have an IQ of over 20).

    At the end, I’d anyday prefer the good old mannered way of letting the bat or ball do the talking instead of the mouth.

    A bret lee fan?!

  4. Jrod says:

    I’ve got e few problems with Harsha banging on about this. Pandey is not a boy, he is a cricketer in one of the top tournaments in the world. Should he not be bounced as well? Secondly Symonds went just as hard at ROFL Van Der Merwe, and Harsha seemed to be ok with that, why because he is all of 4 years older than Pandey, or because he is South African?. Thirdly, is this not the exact reason young Indians are playing in the IPL, to gather experience about International opponents, I dare say he never got this treatment from anyone in Indian cricket, so he now knows what it is like to face up to an Australian mouth. If Pandey is good enough to be at this level, then there should be no holding back.

  5. Krishna says:

    @Jrod, I think this is more about Symonds than Pandey. I don’t clearly the mentality here. The Australians are extremely talented and can win matches on skills alone, but a few of them continue with their gamesmanship.

  6. I agree with you completely here, Sledging is fine when it shows agression, a word from bowler after delivering an ear-ringing bouncer is perfectly ok, until it becomes 6 times an over. Most of the Aussie players in current team do not like the taste of their own medicine. There is a reason why Aussies like Gilchrist and Lee are more popular among non-aussie cricket fans, their agression is only visible in their performances. Rarely do they need to resort to sledging.

  7. Homer says:


    “I dare say he never got this treatment from anyone in Indian cricket, so he now knows what it is like to face up to an Australian mouth. If Pandey is good enough to be at this level, then there should be no holding back.” – square this when Hayden went whimpering to the match referee after Zaheer had abused him during the Mohali Test.

    Hayden was ood enough at Test level, yet he sought refuge with the match referee – could it be because Aussies can dish it out, but cannot take it?

    If Pandey has to be man enough to take it, where does that leave Hayden then?


  8. Danny says:

    The best liga is the indian premier !

  9. Danny says:

    The best liga is the indian premier ! No discussion !

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