Pakistan’s cricket team has arrived in England for a tour where they’ll play 2 Test matches against the English boys as well as an inaugural Test against the Irish side. Touring England over the years has been a tough task for the men in green, not only because of the playing conditions that unlike the sub-continent offer a lot of seam, swing and bounce but also because of the times when Pakistan’s tour to England made way for a major controversy.
So, here is a look at 3 times when Pakistan’s tour to England made way for a major controversy because of which the Pakistani cricketers found themselves in trouble.
1992-The Ball Tampering Scandal
Pakistan played 5 Test matches against a strong English side in 1992 and won the series 2-1. Wasim Akram and Waqar Younis (Ws) were phenomenal during the entire campaign and their ability to reverse the ball eventually, was the difference between the two sides.
Not happy with how things unfolded, English cricketers Allan Lamb and Ian Botham publicly accused not only the Ws for ball-tampering but also their mentor Imran Khan. Khan hence, took both parties to court and won the most expensive libel case in the history of the game.
2006-The Oval Catastrophe
Darrell Hair, the Australian on field umpire accused skipper Inzamam and his boys of ball-tampering again in 2006 during the the final Test of the four match rubber at Oval. Following a team meeting during the tea break Pakistan as a protest refused to come back to the ground and therefore, after waiting for a while the umpires forfeited the game and awarded the Test to England. This remains to be the only instance in the history of Test cricket and hence, lies second on our list of times when Pakistan’s tour to England made way for a major controversy.
Later, following an ICC inquiry both Inzamam and Darrell Hair were handed over sanctions. Inzamam was found not guilty of ball tampering however, he was awarded punishment for bringing the game into disrepute.
Hair who was accused of racial discrimination by Pakistan was among the best umpires in the world at that point. However, his career as a top international umpire was adversely affected because of the scandal and he was never really able to recover to make a noteworthy comeback.
2010-The Spot-Fixing Scandal
2010 was easily one of the worst years Pakistan has had in world cricket. During their tour to England skipper Salman Butt alongside pacer Mohd. Asif and rookie Mohd.Amir were all caught red handed in an ugly episode of spot-fixing, adding one more incident to the times when Pakistan’s tour to England made way for a major controversy.
Following yet another court case all three Pakistani cricketers were sent to jail. Moreover, they were also banned by the International Cricket Council (ICC). Amir this far is the only member of the trio who has been able to revive his career.