5 Times When Cricketers Sacrificed Their Own Good

Cricket has seen a number of selfless acts by players, to help their own teammates and to also uphold the spirit of cricket.

5 Times When Cricketers Sacrificed Their Own Good: The first rule for an individual in a team game, be it cricket or any sport in the world, is to always look for the team’s cause, to win the game for your team, to not look for personal milestones but to aim team’s betterment.

Cricket has seen a number of selfless acts by players, to help their own teammates and to also uphold the spirit of cricket. These unselfish acts were hailed by one and all because it involved very much personal sacrifice.

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Here are 5 instances when cricketers made sacrifices on the field:

Robin Uthappa giving the strike to Rohit Sharma during his 264

Making his comeback into the Indian team, Robin Uthappa walked into to bat against Sri Lanka with India’s score 276/4 in the 41st over and Rohit batting on 155. On a flat pitch, Uthappa could have easily smashed some runs- however, looking at Sharma in great touch at the other end, he decided to only pick singles and give Rohit the strike.

Out of the 9 overs left, Robin played only 16 deliveries and let Rohit go after the others. Rohit Sharma ended up scoring 264, which is the highest individual score in the 50 over format. Rohit scored 91 runs in 43 balls after Uthappa’s arrival, who scored 16 runs from 16 balls. Rohit’s 264 wouldn’t have been possible without Uthappa’s great unselfish batting.

Gautam Gambhir gave away his Man of the Match award to Kohli

Gautam Gambhir made a very touching gesture when he gave his Man of the Match award to a then 21-year-old Virat Kohli in a 2009 ODI against Sri Lanka at the Eden Gardens.

gambhir kohli cricketers

In the chase of 316, Kohli scored his maiden international century, dismissed for 107, while Gambhir carried on to complete the chase, remaining unbeaten on 150. The left-hander was rewarded with the Man of the Match award, however, he asked Kohli to come up and handed him his award. Very few cricketers have done this for their teammates.

Javagal Srinath’s selfless bowling to allow Kumble complete his 10-wicket haul

In the 1999 Delhi Test against Pakistan, Indian legspinner Anil Kumble was on the verge of history having taken 9 wickets in Pakistan’s second innings. Bowling from the other end, seamer Javagal Srinath made sure that he didn’t dismiss Waqar Younis who even reportedly tried to give his wicket to Srinath to deny Kumble 10 wickets.

But Srinath kept bowling well outside off stump and refused Waqar any chance. Soon, Kumble dismissed Wasim Akram, caught at short leg, to become only the second-ever bowler – and first Indian – to take 10 wickets in a single Test innings. Some of Kumble’s 10th wicket credit must also go to Javgal Srinath for his selfless act. Srinath is one of the very few cricketers who had such a big and kind heart.

Richard Hadlee sacrificed his 10-wicket haul for teammate bowler

14 years before Kumble achieved this feat, legendary New Zealand pacer Richard Hadlee almost took 10 wickets but he ended with figures of 9/52 vs Australia in the 1985 Brisbane Test. After taking the first eight wickets, taking all ten wickets was in his sight.

richard hadlee
Image source: ICC Twitter handle

However, Hadlee put his team first before his own personal record by taking the catch of the 9th wicket to fall, bowled by teammate Vaughan Brown. Hadlee returned to take the last wicket. Sports journalist Frank Keating called it “Catch of the century, not because of the difficulty level but because of the selflessness Hadlee showed.”

Mark Taylor’s selfless declaration

At the end of Day 2 of the 1998 Test vs Pakistan, former Australian captain Mark Taylor remained unbeaten on 334, equalling Sir Don Bradman’s score of 334 in 1930 against England, which was then the highest score by an Australian batsman.

Taylor had a great chance to become his country’s highest innings scorer, however, he decided not to go past Bradman’s tally and declared the innings overnight. With that, he also gave up his chance of surpassing Brian Lara’s the then highest individual score in Tests total of 375.

“I have equalled Sir Donald Bradman’s record and that is more than satisfying for me. The [Brian Lara] record doesn’t mean anything. I’d prefer to win this game, that’s what I’m here for,” Taylor said after the match.

Jatin Khandelwal

Hi, I am Jatin Khandelwal. Cricket writing came accidentally for me with an undergrad engineering degree. With opportunities first as a freelancer and then full-time, and experience with time, I have grown in the role. The Cricket Lounge is a place where I can thrive with the best of my abilities.

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