India vs South Africa: Sunil Gavaskar slams Yuzvendra Chahal for lacking professionalism
Team India, led by skipper Virat Kohli, were hoping to put their hands on the trophy by extending their lead to 4-0 in the 6-match ODI series against South Africa but that just wasn't meant to happen as the 'Pink' Proteas showed why they are the No. 1 ranked 50-over side in the world. While rain and a couple of mistakes in the field by Indian players did contribute to the visitors' loss, there's one specific incident that Sunil Gavaskar expressed extreme displeasure at during his post-match analysis, specifically hitting out at Yuzvendra Chahal.
Discussing the turning point of the game, the former Indian captain said that the no-ball incident by Chahal, which gave star of the game David Miller a lifeline, shifted the course of the game in the hosts favour. Chahal overstepped twice during his spell with one of them resulting in a reprieve for Miller, who slammed 28-ball 39 and formed a match-winning partnership with Heinrich Klaasen. Gavaskar, taking on Chahal's case, went on to describe the leggie’s act as unprofessional.
“For me, it was that no-ball, where David Miller was clean bowled, and the way he recovered from it. That, for me, was the turning point,” Gavaskar said while analysing the game for Sony Sports Network. “Till then, India seemed to be in control, they had also seen the back of AB de Villiers, who was batting well. When Miller was struggling to read Yuzvendra Chahal, India were certainly in the driver’s seat,” he added.
Speaking about the significance one no-ball holds in modern-day cricket, Gavaskar said that no player should be overstepping and no wides on the off-side too.
“I will be perfectly honest. In modern-day cricket, with all the technology available, nobody should be bowling no balls. One can understand bowling a wide, down the leg side because that [wide rule] is a very strict interpretation. There should ideally bowl no wides on the offside also.”
While fast bowlers are more prone to be bowling no balls, Gavaskar said that even they shouldn't be doing so.
“Fast bowlers can sometimes overstep. However, because it’s 50-over cricket, because there is a free hit after the no ball, I don’t think fast-bowlers should also be bowling no-balls. They, after all, use a lot of tapes to measure from here to there [run-up distance] and then how does a no ball come through,” he further said in a strong-worded statement.
As Team India held a 3-0 lead going into the Johannesburg ODI, the original Little Master further stated that Chahal's approach was lacking in professionalism.
“So clearly, I think there’s little bit of lack of professionalism there. Maybe a little bit of relaxation after the 3-0 situation and the South Africans took full advantage of it. They batted brilliantly after that, Miller batted brilliantly, [Heinrich] Klaassen was outstanding, [Andile] Phehlukwayo came in and smashed it,” said the 68-year-old.