Mohammed Siraj in action during WTC Final© AFP
Mohammed Siraj courted controversy on Day 2 of the World Test Championship (WTC) Final against Australia at The Oval when he threw the ball towards Steve Smith’s direction in a bizarre incident. Smith started the day on 95 and was able to reach his century with two consecutive boundaries off the pacer’s bowling. On the fourth ball of the over, Smith moved away from the stumps just before the ball was bowled due to some issue with the spider cam but Siraj went ahead and threw the ball straight. Former India skipper Sunil Gavaskar was not pleased with the incident and he made his views clear on commentary.
“What is happening? I mean these are the second and third deliveries of the day,” Gavaskar remarked.
Former India head coach Ravi Shastri also took Smith’s side and said that he had “every right” to move away before the delivery was bowled.
“Steve Smith is just backing away. Didn’t please Siraj but Smith had every right to move out of the way. It’s more the frustration of Siraj being hit for two boundaries. He got sounded off by Rohit Sharma the previous ball,” Shastri said while discussing the incident.
India found themselves in a difficult situation with the early loss of their openers after Australia posted a commendable 469 in their first innings of the World Test Championship final.
Australia added 142 runs to their overnight total with the loss of seven wickets before being bowled out one hour into the afternoon session. Mohammed Siraj cleaned up the tail and was the pick of India’s bowlers with four wickets.
Both Rohit (15 off 26) and Gill (13 off 15) looked in good touch before flattering to deceive. Rohit missed a ball from Cummins that was angled in before Gill inexplicably decided to leave a delivery from Boland on length only to see his stumps being uprooted in the following over.
(With PTI inputs)
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