Although India vs England contests do not enjoy the same rivalry as Ashes or India-Pakistan matches, there have been various controversies whenever the ‘Men in Blue’ have faced the Englishmen. In fact, sledging, though considered a predominantly Australia’s rights, has featured in India-England contests repeatedly. However, India’s new-found attitude of giving it back to opponents had led to various sledging battles being won by the ‘Men in Blue’.[ad id=”29091″]
Here are some instances when sledging has backfired in India vs England contests with ‘Men in Blue’ winning it quite often.
Yuvraj Singh vs Stuart Broad in 2007 World T20: India were cruising to a big total in 2007 World T20 match against England. And Yuvraj Singh and MS Dhoni were looking to make it difficult for England. If they needed further motivation to do well in the death overs, it was provided by England all-rounder Andrew Flintoff who had a war of words with Yuvraj Singh just before Stuart Broad was set to begin the 19th over. Punjab cricketer Yuvi vented all his frustration and anger on Broad’s over, hitting all his six balls for huge sixes. Flintoff was seen shrugging off his head for hurting his team’s chances by sledging India’s angry young man Yuvraj Singh.
Zaheer Khan vs England in 2007 Nottingham Test: England were up against a determined India in the Nottingham Test in 2007. England were staring at conceding a big first-innings lead and started using unethical ways to disturb Indian tailenders, mainly Zaheer Khan. The England slip-cordon started throwing jelly beans when Zaheer was batting in the middle. Zaheer protested and a huge confrontation followed. But despite that, England players did not behave and continued throwing jelly beans. Zaheer decided to answer with the ball, ripping through the England line-up in the second innings, taking 5 wickets, and 9 scalps overall, to bowl India to series win.
Mohammad Kaif vs England in 2002 NatWest Series final: India were down and out, losing their five wickets for 146 chasing 326 for a win in 2002 NatWest Series final. Mohammad Kaif and Yuvraj Singh then stitched a stand of 121 for the sixth wicket to take India closer towards target. Years later, Kaif revealed the then England skipper Nasser Hussain had called him a bus driver to sledge him and distract him. But Kaif was focussed on his task and guided India to one of their memorable wins with an unbeaten knock of 87.
Virat Kohli vs Ben Stokes in 2016 Test series: In the 2016 Test series, Ben Stokes ignited old flare-ups with Virat Kohli, having a war of words with the Indian skipper after the England all-rounder was dismissed in the first innings. ICC reprimanded Stokes for his behaviour. It did not stop there. Stokes gave farewell to Kohli by placing his hand over his mouth after dismissing the Indian skipper in India’s first innings. And Kohli was not to be left behind. The Indian skipper gave a send-off in return putting his finger on the mouth when Stokes was dismissed in the second innings. Kohli got pumped up and cracked 235 in the next Test at Mumbai to help India take 3-0 lead in the series.