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5 freakish happenings in cricket

5 freakish happenings in cricket

Makhaya Ntini

South Africa former deck-hitting enforcer 'Makhaya Ntini' who almost got 400 wickets in 100 Tests and holds a fine ODI record was once the bowling spearhead for Proteas. He is the loudest in the commentary box these days and has got contagious laughter that is hard to stop. However, in his heyday, he used to have a very unusual habit to rejuvenate himself.

Makhaya Ntini used to freshen himself up in this manner: "Not many people know this, but if I struggled during a session, I would sometimes go and pee on my hands and splash it on my face. It would revitalise me and get me going for the next spell."  

Andre Nel

Adrenaline was always in overdrive when Andre Nel had the ball in his hand. The sport has got a dearth of interesting characters like Andre Nel who used to rile up the batsmen and ruffle them with aggression, idiosyncrasies and of course his pace and bounce. 

Hurtling through his short run-up, he used to bang the ball hard and compensated for his limited bag of tricks by getting in the face of a batsman. There was rarely a dull moment when he was operating. After retirement, he has mellowed down but he was once a nuisance for the batters.

In a home test match in Centurian back in 2004 against West Indies, he didn't take a break for one of the most important events of his life - his own wedding. After getting through the ceremony on the second day of the Test, he came back with renewed vigour on the third day and dismissed the great Brian Lara twice the very next day of his marriage. Talk about professionalism and superb work ethic!

Leslie George Hylton

Leslie Hylton represented West Indies in six matches and his performance was good in his brief international career. However, the man had some major problem in his head. Post-retirement, he didn't make wise life choices and was hanged after killing his wife. This is the only example where a cricketer had been executed because of a heinous crime. Leslie was hanged on May 17, 1955 - a year after the murder. He made a weak defense by saying that he was trying to shoot himself but he missed the target and that argument was a poor one because a total of seven bullets were fired.

Sunil Gavaskar

One of the finest batsmen the game has ever seen was almost lost to fishing. We were nearly going to miss the legend smash 34 centuries and 45 fifties. These days he is sharing his sharp analysis and making the game sound good to fans in the commentary box. Gavaskar thrived against the nightmarish West Indies attack as a youngster and played a crucial role in downing West Indies in their backyard in 1971.

Sunil Gavaskar went into a fisherman’s hand at the time of his birth and Sunil's parents were holding the aqua man's baby. It was his uncle who noticed the clanger by a birthmark near his ear. 

“Perhaps, I would have grown up to be an obscure fisherman, toiling somewhere along the west coast,” Sunny later wrote.

Mohammad Hafeez

The top-flight all-rounder and a smooth talker is pretty precise with his run-up and never had his landing foot amble beyond the popping crease. It's like an obedient child who follows his parents' instruction strictly. Hafeez has been a handy all-rounder for Pakistan for about a decade and still going strong with his varied set of skills.

Hafeez also-known-as professor has bowled 2152.5 overs in international cricket without hoying a single no-ball. That is 12,917 balls without umpire getting an opportunity to press the buzzer. Given the accuracy, probably ICC should give him a few extra degrees from the legal limit of straightening the elbow.