Kieron Pollard Mitchell Starc IPL controversy

Mitchell Starc was involved in an exchange of words with Kieron Pollard and the match between Mumbai and Bangalore dished out some unwanted memories.

One of the ugliest incidents in cricketing history took place during the match in Indian Premier League (IPL) between Mumbai Indians and Royal Challengers Bangalore. It was an ugly fight between Kieron Pollard of Mumbai and Mitchell Starc of Bangalore. The fight could have become a street fight had the seniors on the field not intervened.

The incident took place during the 17th over when Mumbai was batting. It was the fourth ball bowled by Starc to Pollard, which was bouncer that the giant West Indian batsman couldn’t hit. Upon this, Starc shot some words in the direction of Pollard, who blew away both Starc and his words with his hand.

The next ball brought all the drama on the cricket field. When Starc was coming in to bowl, Pollard backed off – for reasons best known to him.

However, Starc still bowled the ball, but in the batsman’s direction. It was good that the ball didn’t hit Pollard anywhere.

Now, it was Pollard’s turn to do some throwing. The agitated batsman threw his bat in the bowler’s direction. However, it slipped out of his hand and landed just a few feet away from him (before this, in another match, the bat had slipped out of Pollard’s hand when batting).

This averted a major disaster as if the bat would have hit the bowler that could have done some damage to him as there was no protective gear with Starc unlike Pollard. The huge West Indian batsman started walking towards the bowler and the bowler, in return ignored everything that was happening and turned back to go to the bowling mark.

Seeing this both umpires immediately came forward to intervene and so did Rohit Sharma. Even Virat Kohli rushed to calm things down, though he visibly seemed unhappy the way Pollard reacted to Starc. Seeing the videos of the incident, it looked like it was Starc who first provoked Pollard. And when Pollard backed off from playing a delivery, things started to heat up.

The incident wasn’t certainly a great advert for cricket. Yes, things do heat up during the heat of the moment and things can go wrong. Aggression is understandable and things going wrong up to some extent are also acceptable. However, no one will ever agree to things becoming ugly in a matter of a few seconds.

On one hand there are brand ambassadors like Sachin Tendulkar and M S Dhoni in world cricket and on the other, we get to see such nasty incidents. But we cannot blame it either, as cricket has got much more competitive than what it was around 10 to 12 years ago.

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