[caption id="attachment_692324" align="aligncenter" width="628"]<img class="size-full wp-image-692324" alt="From left: Peter Carlstein(photo courtesy: Wikimedia Commons) and Ali Bacher Getty Images" src="https://www.cricketcountry.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Collage-1.jpg" width="628" height="355" /> From left: Peter Carlstein (photo courtesy: Wikimedia Commons) and Ali Bacher Getty Images[/caption] <p></p> <p></p><i>On October 28, 1972, Queen s Sports Club, Bulawayo witnessed one of the most bizarre demonstrations of </i><a href="https://www.cricketcountry.com/tag/sledging"><i>sledging</i></a><i>, from Ali Bacher. <b>Abhishek Mukherjee </b>tells the story.</i> <p></p> <p></p>What is the most effective way to <a href="https://www.cricketcountry.com/tag/sledges">sledge</a>? Some hurl the choicest of abuses.The stump microphones pick up a lot these days, but even before that, Glenn McGrath-Ramnaresh Sarwan turned out to be quite ugly perhaps beyond the relatively innocent domain of sledging. <p></p> <p></p>Some, like Fred Trueman (remember the perhaps-apocryphal sentence to Raman Subba Row?), Brian McMillan, and Kumar Sangakkara, are masters of wit. Witty sledges do not always work, but they make the best stories. <p></p> <p></p>There are also famous comebacks, like James Ormond s to Mark Waugh or Eddo Brandes to McGrath, among others. Some of these have attained iconic status. <p></p> <p></p>Merv Hughes sledges are possibly a different genre altogether. <a href="https://www.cricketcountry.com/articles/bill-athey-un-sledges-merv-hughes-690273">Bill Athey was the only known one to find a response of any sort to Hughes</a>. <p></p> <p></p>But how do you handle a cricketer who actually wants to sledge? Ali Bacher probably demonstrated the best way to go about it, in a Currie Cup match of 1972-73. <p></p> <p></p>Peter Carlstein was a feisty character who loved a fight or two. He had played 8 Tests on either side of 1960 without much success. His Test career met with a tragic end: while touring New Zealand in 1963-64, news arrived that his wife and three children had died in a road accident back home. He never played another Test. <p></p> <p></p>Carlstein had started his career with Orange Free State. He later played for Transvaal,moved to Natal for a season,returned to Transvaal, switched to Rhodesia, returned to Transvaal again, and finally ended his 25-season career with Rhodesia. <p></p> <p></p>His final move from Transvaal to Rhodesia was in 1972-73. When Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) hosted Transvaal the next time, Carlstein was up against several men he had played with, including captain Bacher. <p></p> <p></p>Rhodesia were 47 for 2 when Carlstein walked out to join Duncan Fletcher. The team acted on cue. Not a single fielder uttered a word. Even the sound of Carlstein marking his guard was fairly audible. He did not show it, but they had already managed to get him worked up. <p></p> <p></p>Now as William Kerr ran in to bowl his left-arm medium pace, he was stopped on his track by Bacher. There was a change in field, obviously in pin-drop silence. Carlstein, getting impatient with every passing moment, now walked down the pitch to have a tap or two with his bat. Then he took guard again. <p></p> <p></p>Once again Kerr started his run-up. Once again Bacher, from mid-off, signalled him to stop.He first apologised to the umpire, then changed the field again without a noise, as usual. <p></p> <p></p>When Kerr finally bowled, Carlstein somehow kept his cool and pushed the ball to Bacher at mid-off. At this point Lee Irvine, standing up to the stumps to Kerr, could not resist himself any longer. Another glorious stroke-player here, boys, Irvine blurted out. <p></p> <p></p>That single statement broke the camel s back. Carlstein held his bat by the blade and thrust the handle into Irvine s chest. Irvine fell to the ground, obviously in pain, and the umpires had to intervene to keep Carlstein away from causing subsequent damage. <p></p> <p></p>What would today s match referees have done? <p></p> <p></p><b>Postscript</b> <p></p> <p></p>The tactic did not work in the long run. Carlstein recovered quite well, hitting 16 fours in his 95. In fact, he top-scored in Rhodesia s total of 311. Then Jackie du Preez came to the party, bowling out Transvaal for 243. Rhodesia were in trouble at 97 for 6 before captain Mike Procter and wicketkeeper Howard Gardiner added 108. <p></p> <p></p>Transvaal got to a decent start in pursuit of 311, even reaching 103 for 1. Then Procter blew them away for 197 with a career-best haul of 9 for 71. He might have had all ten, had Richard Kaschula not played spoilsport by dismissing Bacher. <p></p> <p></p><b>Brief scores:</b> <p></p> <p></p><b>Rhodesia </b>311 (Peter Carlstein 95, Jackie du Preez 53; Donald Mackay-Coghill 4 for 86)and 242 for 8 decl. (Mike Procter 65, Howard Gardiner 64; Douglas Neilson 4 for 74) beat <b>Eastern Province </b>243 (Brian Bath 50; Jackie du Preez 4 for 58) and 197 (Ali Bacher 62; Mike Procter 9 for 71) by 113 runs.