Home > Features >

Kieron Pollard being penalised more than Mitchell Starc doesn’t seem right

Mitchell Starc (left) was fined 50 per cent of his match fee while Kieron Pollard (top right) was fined 75 per cent of his.
Mitchell Starc (left) was fined 50 per cent of his match fee while Kieron Pollard (top right) was fined 75 per cent of his.

Just when the fans had thought the Indian Premier League (IPL) could not sink any further, it reached a new nadir by letting Kieron Pollard and Mitchell Starc go away with financial sentences. Along with the fact that the punishment was ridiculously insignificant, there was another issue that went largely unnoticed. Abhishek Mukherjee has more…

So Kieron Pollard and Mitchell Starc have got away with fines, the issue has been forgotten, Shibani Dandekar is back, cheerleaders have returned to their day jobs, cricketers are tweeting the regulatory selfies, and the Indian Premier League (IPL) is underway again. There has been a general murmur that the pair had got away easily, and their responsibilities towards the sport and the next generation has been accepted as inconsequential.

In short, the world has moved on.

Though the Pollard-Starc tussle is now a matter of the past, there remains a question: what had Pollard done to be penalised more than Starc?

Let us recall the incident: Starc bounced at Pollard; the batsman went for the hook instinctively and missed; Starc unleashed a verbal barrage of unknown [but guessable] words; Pollard shrugged them off, and that was that.

Starc ran in again: this time Pollard backed away before the ball was delivered. Starc’s response was rather unusual: bowlers, under such circumstances, usually back out or bowl whatever they would have bowled anyway. Instead, Starc chose to follow Pollard, and aimed one at his body. One might argue that it was unintentional, but then, one might argue that Chris Martin was an excellent batsman who was simply unlucky.

Let us evaluate Starc’s action: Pollard had backed away, and Starc still aimed at his body. Never did it seem that he had any other intention.

What followed?

A fuming Pollard raised his bat and hurled it at Starc — well, almost. He controlled the action at the last moment, but it was a tad too late: he could only loosen his grip, which made the bat drop a few feet away from him harmlessly.

Let us evaluate Pollard’s action: Starc had aimed one at his body intentionally after he had backed away. He wanted to get back with a physical retaliation, but controlled his temper at the last moment. He realised he was not doing the right thing.

Pitting the outbursts against each other, Starc was the one who never controlled his emotions: Pollard did pull out at the last moment. Yet, Andy Pycroft fined [since he was the match-referee, we can safely assume it was his decision] Starc 50 per cent of his match fee; Pollard, 75 per cent.

Was it because Pollard’s action looked worse?

Was it because the bat is potentially a more dangerous object than the ball [this can be argued upon, since Starc would have had ample time to take evasive action]?

Was it because hurling a bat is rarer than bowling at a batsman’s body?

Was the spectacle more important than the intent and the restraint shown?

Whatever it was, the discrimination in fines made as much sense as the illogically extended length of Ishant Sharma’s Test career.

Click here for IPL 2014 Points Table and Team Standings

Click here for IPL 2014 Schedule: Match time table for IPL 7

Click here for IPL 2014 Schedule & Results

Click here for IPL 2014 complete coverage

(Abhishek Mukherjee is the Deputy Editor and Cricket Historian at CricketCountry. He blogs at http://ovshake.blogspot.in and can be followed on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/ovshake42)

(The above article has been republished with permission from DNA, where it first appeared)

West Indies in South Africa, 2014-15

Dec 26, 2014 (14:00 IST)   at Port Elizabeth

Sri Lanka tour of New Zealand, 2014-15

Dec 26, 2014 (03:30 IST)   at Christchurch

India tour of Australia, 2014-15

Dec 26, 2014 (05:00 IST)   at Melbourne

West Indies in South Africa, 2014-15

Jan 2, 2015 (14:00 IST)   at Cape Town

Sri Lanka tour of New Zealand, 2014-15

Jan 3, 2015 (03:30 IST)   at Wellington

More

Pakistan vs New Zealand in UAE, 2014

Dec 19, 2014  at Abu Dhabi

New Zealand won by 68 runs

India tour of Australia, 2014-15

Dec 17, 2014  at Woolloongabba, Brisbane

Australia won by 4 wkts

Pakistan vs New Zealand in UAE, 2014

Dec 17, 2014  at Abu Dhabi

New Zealand won by 7 runs

West Indies in South Africa, 2014-15

Dec 17, 2014  at Centurion

South Africa won by an innings and 220 runs

England tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Dec 16, 2014  at Colombo

Sri Lanka won by 87 runs

Photos

India vs Australia, 2nd Test at Brisbane

Videos

Ind vs Aus: Dhoni analyses the 4-wicket loss at Brisbane

Live Cricket Score Ranji Trophy 2014-15, Round 3, Day 1 — All matches

India’s collapse against Australia on 2nd Test at Brisbane: Did the visitors really bat badly on Day 4?

India vs Australia 2014-15, 2nd Test at Brisbane: Marks out of 10 for the hosts

India vs Australia 2014-15, Brisbane: India marks out of 10

India vs Australia, 2nd Test at Brisbane: India’s tail tales

Anil Kumble Australia India Moments in history Ricky Ponting South Africa

Kevin Pietersen determined to make comeback despite selectors’ reluctance

Alastair Cook sacked in ‘hugely disrespectful’ manner: Andrew Strauss

India vs Australia 2014-15, 3rd Test at Melbourne: Joe Burns says dream come true to play for Australia

Australia celebrate win at Brisbane vs India

Big Bash League 2014-15: Melbourne Renegades want Muttiah Muralitharan back

Pakistan vs New Zealand ODI series 2014: A look back at the series

Murali Vijay’s 144 among most runs scored by an Indian on Day 1 of overseas Test

Virat Kohli, Steve Smith and others scoring century on their Captaincy Debut in Test cricket

Batsman given hit wicket after mobile phone falls on stumps

India vs Australia 2014-15, 2nd Test at Brisbane: Highlights

Fan of the Day

Niharika Shah

Niharika Shah

682 Posts | 6 Fans

Video: Phil Hughes suffers head injury, collapses on field during New South Wales vs South Australia tie

प्रसिद्ध कथक नृत्यांगना सितारा देवी नहीं रही

More broadband connections to boost GDP growth in Asia Pacific: GSMA

India is becoming our largest overseas market, Xiaomi CEO Lei Jun says

Bigg Boss 8: Ali Quli Mirza, Renee Dhyani, Upen Patel, Praneet Bhatt, Sonali Raut – who should be evicted this week?

Revealed: The reason why Kishore Kumar’s biopic starring Ranbir Kapoor won’t feature Katrina Kaif!

अभिनेत्री प्रियंका चोपड़ा ने स्वच्छ भारत अभियान में हिस्सा लिया

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here