Home > Features >

Kieron Pollard vs Mitchell Starc: Only match fees?

A screen shot of the fight between Kieron Pollard and Mitchell Starc.
A screen shot of the fight between Kieron Pollard and Mitchell Starc.

Less than 24 hours after Mitchell Starc and Kieron Pollard have been involved in one of the ugliest on-field spats in the history of the sport, news has come out that they have got away with fines. Abhishek Mukherjee explains why the punishment is outrageously insignificant.

Let us accept it: the Indian Premier League (IPL), given all its pros and cons, is a tournament players opt for because of its financial rewards. Thanks to the moolah it has on offer, IPL remains the most-anticipated franchise-owned cricket tournament in the world despite its counterparts all over the world.

When investors put their money in, they do want returns out of it.

Hence the cheerleaders; hence the shameless objectification of women on television screen; hence the association of sixes and catches and what-not with brands; hence the showcasing of film stars throughout the tournament; hence the rave post-match parties.

Hence the minimalistic, laughable, ridiculous bans slapped on Kieron Pollard (75% of match fee) and Mitchell Starc (50% of match fee) by Andy Pycroft.

It does not matter whether Pollard and Starc have brought disgrace to the sport.

It does not matter whether they have embarrassed the entire cricket fraternity in front of the world.

It does not matter whether they have been watched by a million children (with plastic bats in their hands) who will grow up with an impression that hooliganism and on-field violence are integral parts of being role-models.

It is perhaps more important to encourage such acts: monetary damages can be repaired very easily, given the purses the owners and the league carry.

Instead, that will provide the teams and the tournament with more boost — both financial and in terms of TRP. Such controversies, as we know, get viral on social media, what with the likes and shares and comments and re-tweets. Banning the pair would have stopped others from repeating such actions and would have taken a lot of sheen and glitz off the tournament.

It, therefore, makes perfect sense to encourage such acts. Maybe put a token fine of them, but let things stop at that.

One may recollect the number of incidents when Sourav Ganguly and a few others have been dished out bans for lesser incidents, but then, IPL is not about history — especially if the incident dates back over a decade.

Bring on Shibani Dandekar instead.

(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)

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


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


India vs Australia, 2nd Test at Brisbane


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

Live Cricket Score Ranji Trophy 2014-15, Round 3, Day 2 — All matches

Shahid Afridi, please do not take the innocence away from cricket

India vs Australia 2014: Visitors would do well to back aggression up with performances

South Africa vs West Indies 2014-15: Is Jason Holder a captain or a stooge?

Can Eoin Morgan change England’s limited-overs fortunes?

Australia India Interviews Moments in history Ricky Ponting

Quinton de Kock in doubt for ICC World Cup 2015

Sachin Tendulkar announced as ICC World Cup 2015 brand ambassador

India vs Australia 2014-15: Joe Burns’ father did not believe selection news

India vs Australia 2014-15: Nathan Lyon backs officials despite India’s complaints

Shahid Afridi retirement: For Pathans, solace is in Pakistan cricket

ICC World Cup 2015: Will India’s trend of performing against expectations continue?

Moin Khan: Pakistan must carry momentum in ICC World Cup 2015

West Indies tour of South Africa 2014-15: One-sided encounters may suck interest out of series

India tour of Australia 2014-15: Can Australia make it 12 wins in a row at home?

Surrey throw away wickets to win against Nottinghamshire

Fan of the Day

Niharika Shah

Niharika Shah

683 Posts | 6 Fans

Mitchell Johnson's 37 wickets against England in Ashes 2013-14

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