Hardik Pandya of Mumbai Indians made a statement on the cricket field during the clash against Rajasthan Royals in IPL 2020. He took a knee in support of the Black Lives Matter movement after he reached his first fifty in the ongoing IPL season. 

There have been instances in the past when players have made a statement on the cricket field. Cricwizz takes a look.

1) Denesh Ramdin’s response to Sir Viv Richards

Denesh Ramdin Cricket
Denesh Ramdin (Image Credits: CricketCountry)

During the Trent Bridge Test against England in 2012, Denesh Ramdin shocked everyone when he took out a chit of paper that read ‘Yea Viv, talk nah’ after he reached his century. It was in response to Sir Viv Richards’ criticism of West Indians during the Test series, stating the “players had deteriorated in a big way.” Ramdin later said Sir Viv’s comments were hurtful although he still regards him as a legend of the West Indian cricket. Sir Viv said he’s happy that Ramdin got motivated by his comments and did well.

2) Naseer Hussain's no 3 spot

Naseer Hussain Cricket
Naseer Hussain (Image Credits: SkySport)

The former England skipper was always criticized for his inconsistent limited-overs performances. Critics were baying for his blood when he continued to bat at No 3 in ODIs. In the 2002 Natwest Series final, Hussain cracked a ton – his first and only century in ODIs - batting at No 3, and then had an animated celebration, pointing to the No 3 printed on the back of his jersey, implying he is too good to bat at No 3. However, unfortunately, Hussain’s only ODI ton ended up on the losing side.

3) KL Rahul's century celebration

KL Rahul Cricket
KL Rahul (Image Credits: OutlookIndia)

Rahul has had a new celebration after reaching his ton against West Indies in the Vizag ODI in 2019. He closed his eyes, and blocked his ears with his fingers, stating he is shutting off all criticism as he goes on to score runs. It was a statement from Rahul, implying he is good enough to play at this level after he has been consistently in and out of the team. Rahul didn’t reveal the reason for the celebration and said it’s a mystery. He continued celebrating his ton in this fashion in IPL 2020 as well.

4) Sachin Tendulkar’s 100th ton

Sachin Tendulkar (Image Credits: Cricketdawn)

It took Sachin Tendulkar a year to move from 99th ton to 100th international ton, and he was under pressure throughout. So, when he scored his 100th international ton in the Dhaka ODI against Bangladesh in 2012, he did his customary celebration of raising his bat and looking into the sky, but this time it was bit different. 

He kissed the Indian emblem on his helmet, and pointed to it with the handle of his bat, stating that he always played for India, and not for his 100 tons, after a buzz was created around his 100th international ton. He said it was difficult for him mentally as he was not only playing for his 100th international ton alone.

5) Samuels’ off-the-field statement

Marlon Samuels Cricket
Marlon Samuels (Image Credits: Criczone)

Post winning the 2016 World T20 final against England, the man of the match Marlon Samuels, who struck 85 not out in the title round, took questions from the media in the post-match conference with his pads on and his feet on the table, implying he is the boss now after winning the tournament and has conquered the world, taking digs at England all-rounder Ben Stokes who sledged him during the match. 

He also took potshots at Warne who criticized him for his failure in the semi-final against India, and also for his previous spat with the former Australian spinner in the Big Bash League. 

Cover Credits: Cricketlounge