Surely, the Pakistan Cricket team is not having the best of days on the field as well off it! After a spate of losses against Sri Lanka in the Tests as well as ODIs, the players are demeaning the pride of cricket as well as the spirit.
Surely, the Pakistan Cricket team is not having the best of days on the field as well off it!
After a spate of losses against Sri Lanka in the Tests as well as ODIs, the players are demeaning the pride of cricket as well as the spirit.
When was the last time a cricketer was accused of lashing out religious comments against his opposite number?
In Sri Lanka, it did as Pakistan batsman Ahmed Shehzad was heard on camera saying to Sri Lankan player Tillakaratne Dilshan after their one-day international.
The incident happened when the players were walking back to the dressing room at the Dambulla cricket ground, cricketer Shehzad was caught on camera telling Dilshan, “if you are a non-Muslim and you turn Muslim, no matter whatever you do in your life, straight to heaven.”
In reply, Dilshan did have a word with him but the reply was not too clear to which Shehzad went on to say, “Then be ready for the fire.”
The PCB (Pakistan Cricket Board) has reacted vehemently to the reactions of Shehzad. The batsman was summoned to PCB headquarters in Lahore and was asked to explain about his ‘vague’ comments. However, the PCB further stated that it was still investigating the matter.
Investigating, really PCB?
If that was the case, why couldn’t the board officials or the management staff interrogate the issue after the match took place?
Fact of the matter is, sledging is a part and parcel of cricket.
Off late, James Anderson and Ravindra Jadeja thrust themselves in a war of words that took the sheen away of the gentleman’s game.
Coming to the serious issue at hand, Shehzad has spoilt the name of his country as well as himself. Furthermore, cricket knows no religious boundaries or castes but is remembered for the sportsmanship and togetherness it is played with.
Pakistani cricketers are not new to controversy. If the names of Salman Butt, Mohammad Aamer and Mohammed Asif are evoked, that episode of the ‘spot-fixing’ quickly comes to the fore. The country is plagued with violence and terror attacks and due to which was visible during the 2011 World Cup, where the likes of India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh took the honours as Pakistan took the backseat.
Dilshan was born to a Muslim father and a Buddhist mother and was known as Tuwan Mohamed Dilshan.
Reports suggested that Dilshan had shed his Muslim name shortly after his international debut in 1999 took up Tillakaratne Mudiyanselage Dilshan with a cultural Sinhalese-Buddhist identity. His childhood coach Ranjan Paranavitana said in a news report that even though Dilshan carried a Muslim name, he and his brothers and sisters followed their mother’s religion from their childhood (Buddhism).
Former India cricketer lashed out at Shehzad’s comments and stated, “Has Shehzad been selected to play cricket or has he been selected as a Maulana to preach Islam? He should know that if a player is picked to play for his country, then he is an ambassador of his country and should do what he was picked to do – play – rather than give sermons.”
On a whole, Shehzad’s alleged comments could land him in hot water. The cricketer has no authority to target one’s religion or race or creed.
If the allegations are proved right, Shehzad could well be in trouble and deservedly!