India in England 2014 July 16, 2014

Stern punishment if Anderson is guilty - Boycott


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Boycott on Anderson: "If he's found guilty, then there's no excuse."

Former England batsman Geoffrey Boycott has said James Anderson should be given a "stern punishment" if he is found guilty of having abused and pushed Ravindra Jadeja on the second day of the first Investec Test at Trent Bridge.

"If anybody's found guilty, and if I had a say in it, I believe he should be punished and punished harshly, that will stop it," Boycott told ESPNcricinfo. "I think everybody [found guilty] deserves a stern punishment. I didn't see any pushing and I could have easily missed it. If he's found guilty of that, then there's no excuse."

The alleged incident took place when the players left the field for lunch on the second day. There was reportedly a verbal altercation between Anderson and Jadeja that continued as they walked towards the dressing room. Jadeja was unbeaten on 24, and MS Dhoni on 81, and Anderson had bowled the last over before lunch. Anderson was charged under Level 3 of the ICC Code of Conduct after India team manager Sunil Dev lodged the complaint.

"What is going on in cricket, verbals between players, and particularly bowlers trying to rile batsmen by flagging them off, I don't like it," Boycott said. "I've never agreed with it, I don't think there's a place for it in cricket. The modern player, in a lot of countries, accepts it as a norm as if they are growing up with it and everybody does it and everybody should do it. They believe it is not hurting cricket. Well, I believe it is. Jimmy [Anderson] is known to be one that talks to players. Now what he actually says I don't know, I'm not near enough to hear it and I certainly can't lip-read. But he is known to do a lot of talking. I don't agree with it.

"I've been against some of the great fast bowlers in the world, the great West Indians, they didn't have to flag you off and make crude remarks. They just tried to bowl you out, they tried to knock you out sometimes but that's part of the game. They never got involved - [Denniss] Lillee, [Jeff] Thomson. Thomson used to swear under his breath but he never swore at the batsman, he just swore at himself and made expletives when he got a thick edge and it went between slip and gully for four. He'd be annoyed and irritated but he wouldn't swear at the batsman. Fred Trueman used to swear and make funny remarks and make you laugh."

Anderson scored a fighting 81 in England's only innings and took four wickets in the match, including Jadeja's in the second innings. He faces a ban of at least two Tests if he is found guilty because the minimum sanction for a Level 3 violation is four suspension points and two points equates to missing one Test. He faces a hearing that will take place within 14 days.

Vishal Dikshit is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Ravi Kumar on July 17, 2014, 9:14 GMT

    Well Said Boycs. yes I remember watching the West Indian bowlers. They proved their merit by bowling well and winning games and not by abusing the opposition batsmen.

    It is after all a game and always mentioned as a gentleman's games. With people like Anderson, Ponting, the other ugly Aussies it is become an ungentleman game. Hope some severe action is taking if Anderson is found guilty and help to improve the things.

  • Dummy4 on July 17, 2014, 3:50 GMT

    What a Gentleman. He said everything about it. Nowadays even young players think it is ok to make other team angry and get them out. Then who will be better at it will win and who are brought up with good qualities will loose and they will unable get adjusted to it. SO THIS SHOULD NOT BE ALLOWED TO CONTINUE AS NORMAL. GIVE THE MAXIMUM

  • John on July 17, 2014, 1:34 GMT

    Money and power changed the game forever. Winning is everything and not just because its a competitive sport. That's the broader picture ... The pressure is enormous on cricketers to WIN! Contract, Money, Sponsorships, the Media . . . ESPN . . . Yes, you folks too are partly responsible . . . everyone is quick to criticise poor performance . . . Trott, Swann, Pietersen ... where are they now? So, I agree that if Jimmy and Jadeja are "convicted" then the penalties should be severe as an example BUT THE ON-FIELD SLAGGING HAS TO BE STOPPED BY WAY OF AMENDING THE LAWS. Give the power to the umpires and make sure they enforce it. Let skill be the determining factor of who wins. I agree iwth Ian Chappell and Geof Boycott. Thanks

  • Android on July 16, 2014, 21:20 GMT

    Having played a bit of low league cricket I know some like a bit of chat in the middle but most of it is in good humour. However what Anderson was dishing out to Jadeja was far from it. There was zero respect in his body language and he kept at it, even walking upto Jadeja to give him a mouthful. I wouldnt take that even in the middle, let alone outside it.

  • Neelesh on July 16, 2014, 20:06 GMT

    I am always against bowlers sledging to batsmen. I mean bowler is allowed to say anything to the batsman and if the batsman even turns around and says something after getting out, it is a big NO NO in the eyes of everybody. It is not fair, and Anderson should be punished if he has made any personal comments to Jadeja and physically touched him.

  • Mel on July 16, 2014, 18:32 GMT

    Well spoken by Geoff Boycott, someone who truly lived up to the spirit of the game in his day. I hope Cook can see the contrast between himself and Boycott. Cricket is a noble game of high ideals and however inconvenient they must be preserved.

  • san on July 16, 2014, 14:55 GMT

    Cricket is a gentlemen's game....Bowlers (some times wicket keepers and close-in fielders) seem to think that they have a pre-ordained right to bad mouth the batsmen. Have not seen any/many instances where a batsman starts it (for the obvious reason of not losing concentration)....

    They can still be aggressive without bad mouthing the batsman... it is ok like Thompson swearing to himself when things do not go per plan.. but you should not be allowed to do that to the batsman....

    If not for the possibility of losing their concentration, I do not think any of the batsmen would mind going back to the bowler...

    and for the fun part ---- bowlers beware.. if it gets to that.. the batsmen are equipped with a weapon in the form of bat.. remember Miandad vs Lille (?)

  • Dummy4 on July 16, 2014, 14:18 GMT

    We can understand , players getting into on-field arguments, sledging etc. All part of game if it doesn't cross the limits. On-field there will be enmity, but off-field they should behave as professionals and not as hooligans.

  • Baskar on July 16, 2014, 14:02 GMT

    Well said, Boycott. Part of being a sportsperson is to compete at full tilt but know it is not personal. Somehow mental disintegration thanks to the Aussies is now part of the game where even the media participate especially down under.

  • Mathew on July 16, 2014, 13:23 GMT

    Like Boycott said it is increasingly becoming common for bowlers to say something at the batsman - sometimes when their plan doesn't work, sometimes when their plan works and the batsman is out and sometimes when the batsman escapes losing his wicket by theskin of his teeth often due to good fortune. in all of these instances, the bowler believes he is within his rights to badmouth the batsman. It is sad but that is the current reality.

    But having said all this, if this verbal duels now threaten to get physical then the officials need to intervene and draw the line. Else it could get uglier as time goes on and cricket would have to see the selection of strategic hulk hogans in the team!

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