February 26, 2011

Players and their temper tantrums

Siddhartha Talya

Angus Fraser, in the Independent, recounts instances of players venting their anger, the consequences of which include broken windows, verbal volleys and thrown bats. This, after what Ricky Ponting did after his run-out against Zimbabwe.

Mike Atherton was usually quite controlled after getting out but on one occasion, after a particularly poor decision in a Test in Port Elizabeth, his temper got the better of him. It was England's 1995-96 tour of South Africa and the players were constantly weighed to gauge how much fluid we should take after a long period in the field. Because of this, a set of scales were always by the dressing room door.

We could tell Atherton wasn't happy as he walked into the changing room and moments later we heard a loud crash and twang. We knew the scales had copped the brunt of his frustration. After a couple of minutes the silence was broken by a slightly embarrassed request call to Wayne Morten, the England physiotherapist. "Wayne, Wayne," came the weak call, "could you come here please?" It turned out that Atherton had booted the scales so hard that he had broken the big toe on his right foot.

Siddhartha Talya is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

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