5 instances when relationships of team-mates got sour post retirement
A camaraderie between players is one of the essentials for building a great team. However, at the end of the day, a team consists of individuals who have their separate identities and may have diverse opinion on matters.Two players who are part of the same team may seem to share a good understanding of each other in their playing days. But there may be a few skeletons in the cupboard which mostly tend to come out when one or both the players have retired.There have been numerous occasions when relationships between team-mates turned sour post retirement. Here are 5 popular ones from the cricketing world.
#5 Kevin Pietersen - Andrew Strauss
One of the ugliest episodes of relationships between former team-mates turning sour in recent times comes from English cricket. It involves long-discarded batsman Kevin Pietersen and retired former England skipper Andrew Strauss.
Starting with being heroes in the epic 2005 Ashes series, the two former English cricketers were involved in a captaincy give-and-take until Strauss took over as full-time captain. Things started going out of hand, when in 2012, Pietersen was found guilty of sending provocative texts to South African cricketers, primarily about Strauss.
Strauss retired soon after and Pietersen was left out of the team post the 2013/14 Ashes.
In 2015, Strauss became England’s new director of cricket and divulged to the dashing batsman that he is no longer in the national team’s scheme of things, to which KP responded furiously and sent Strauss foul-mouthed texts.
#4 Rameez Raja - Mohammad Yousuf
Most feuds between former team-mates have occurred through indirect channels such as interviews and written pieces. However, former Pakistani cricketers Rameez Raja and Mohammad Yousuf took it a step further, courtesy a verbal altercation on national television.
The events transpired a couple of months back when both of them had been invited to take part in a TV debate about Mohammad Amir’s much-hyped return after his ban. On a comment from Yousuf, Raja was quick to point out that he mustn’t lie now that he has grown a beard.
Mohammad Yousuf retaliated by calling him a school teacher and questioned his credentials as an international cricketer for Pakistan. When the anchor requested them to stop arguing, Rameez Raja requested not to call shameless people like Yousuf when he is around.
#3 Michael Clarke - Andrew Symonds & Matthew Hayden
The saga surrounding recently retired Australian captain Michael Clarke and some of his former team-mates left a sour taste in the mouths of all related parties. During an interview last year, former Aussie batsman Matthew Hayden took a dig at Clarke by revealing how he once threatened to return his baggy green cap.
In a separate interview, another of Clarke’s fellow team-mates, Andrew Symonds went on to say that he was never a natural leader like a Steve Waugh or a Ricky Ponting. However, in the Ashes Diary released in November last year, the former Australian skipper retaliated hard against Hayden and Symonds’ comments.
About Andrew Symonds, he wrote that the allrounder is not the right person to judge someone’s leadership. On the other hand, Michael Clarke said about Matthew Hayden’s opinion that he had shown throughout his career how much he valued playing for his country and what his #389 Baggy Green mean to him.
#2 Kapil Dev - Manoj Prabhakar
There was a time back in the late 1980s and early 1990s when the legendary Kapil Dev and swing bowler Manoj Prabhakar opened the bowling for India. Nothing in the way that things were between them during their playing days suggested that something could be wrong.
However, close to a decade later, in the year 2000, things turned ugly between the two as Prabhakar allegedly accused Kapil of offering him INR 25 lakhs to play badly in a One Day International match. The former Indian skipper was so deeply affected by the assault on his integrity that he wept during an interview on national television.
The Delhi bowler, however, was unable to provide enough conclusive evidence for the charges and Kapil Dev came out unscathed. Although Kapil has acknowledged that he shares no grudges with Manoj Prabhakar, the latter stands by whatever he had said 15 years ago.
#1 Shane Warne - Steve Waugh
Perhaps one of the greatest instances of relationships turning sour between ex-teammates involves former Australian skipper Steve Waugh and leg-spinner Steve Waugh. While both these greats thrived as a part of the same Aussie team, cracks had started to develop right from their playing days.
It all rolls back to the time when Waugh took a tough decision of dropping Warne from the team for their 1999 tour to the Caribbean. The burly leggie did not take too kindly to this and this kick-started a feud which remains till date.
Very recently, Shane Warne opened up in a reality TV show about why he dislikes Steve Waugh and called the former skipper ‘the most selfish cricketer’ he has played with. This turns out to be a proof which is enough to show that nothing is right between the two Australian legends.