Andrew Flintoff: Twenty years ago, sledging was 10 times worse
Following the recent matches between Australia and India, sledging in the game of cricket has come under the scanner with both teams exchanging verbal spats throughout the summer. Now, former English captain Andrew Flintoff has given his opinion about the issue, stating that sledging was much worse when he made his debut.
Speaking to BBC Sport, Flintoff said: "Twenty years ago, sledging was 10 times worse. Now, with stump microphones and cameras all over, everything gets picked up.
"One of the first Test matches I played against South Africa, there was one fella who was a batter. He fielded at gully - I won't mention his name - but he was the worst I have ever come across. Daryl Cullinan! He was horrible. I was only young... the words he called me, I didn't even know what they meant. He just went at me and I don't think there's any place for that in any sport or any society."
The 37-year-old also said that sledging was fine as long as it was not too personal and that Australian cricketers Adam Gilchrist and Shane Warne were very good at it during his playing days.
"I don't mind the odd chirp - Adam Gilchrist was fantastic at it because he'd do enough to put you off but not enough to upset you. Shane Warne was similar. It seems you can walk onto the field, say anything you want about somebody and then walk off and forget about it.
"You wouldn't walk into somebody's office and let rip at them for 10 minutes and then go for a cup of tea. "As people you know the difference - you know right from wrong," added Flintoff, who starred for the Brisbane Heat in the Big Bash League (BBL).