In a single sentence, it is all over for the temperamental fast bowler from Kerala. Disappointment was evident on his face at the news that he had just received a life ban from the BCCI for his role in the spot-fixing mess that gripped the sixth season of the Indian Premier League.
Shanthakumaran Sreesanth, the former Indian pacer, hasn’t had a squeaky-clean record in his seven-year international career. Stories of his numerous run-ins with match officials, teammates and opposition players have seen him thrust into prominence, while his cricketing skills had hitherto gone unnoticed bar the occasional superlative performance.
Sreesanth’s dreams of making a comeback to the national squad may be shattered for now, but there’s no escaping the fact that his colourful personality was somewhat instrumental in drawing large crowds to the grounds.
His on-field theatrics, while infuriating both his captain and the rival team’s players at times, garnered him much publicity but sadly, the showman really couldn’t handle the vagaries of fame and being in the spotlight for more reasons than one.
Here’s a look at five instances which defined the various facets of Sreesanth’s personality:
5. Corrupted by riches – The spot fixing saga
The pacer has termed the recent life ban slapped on him by the BCCI on charges of spot fixing as the biggest setback of his career. His alleged links with bookies, accepting hefty payments in return for conceding plenty of runs at pre-determined stages in an IPL game (through use of a towel) and a taste for the high life – all of these combined to curtail an already checkered career.
Why he decided to fritter away slim chances of returning to the national squad is a question best left to the pacer himself. Fixing in sport is considered to be the ultimate betrayal by a sportsperson, and Sreesanth, sadly, had done just that.
He has also suffered the ignominy of spending a fair bit of time in prison for that solitary moment of weakness, but this conviction has sapped whatever hopes he may have entertained of a comeback despite his statements to the contrary.
And most unfortunately, this is what he will be remembered for in times to come.