The ongoing Border-Gavaskar trophy in Australia been hit by an unfortunate controversy after two of India’s leading fast bowlers, Mohammed Siraj and Jasprit Bumrah, alleged that they had faced racial abuses from a section of the Australian crowd over the period of three days at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
According to The Daily Telegraph, a crowd member at the Randwick End allegedly abused Mohammed Siraj when he was fielding at fine leg on Saturday. Siraj is only playing his second Test match for India. He lost his father when he was in Australia and was not able to see him for the last time due to his commitment to the national team.
Indian team management has taken a dim view of the racial abuse and registered an official complaint with the ICC. Indian coaching staff, Siraj and Bumrah were seen holding intense discussions with officials from Cricket Australia, ICC representatives and stadium security after the end of the third day’s play at the SCG. Earlier, Indian skipper Ajinkya Rahane had reported the abuse to on-field umpires Paul Reiffel and Paul Wilson. Match referee David Boon reportedly visited the Indian dressing room after that to speak to Indian players and officials.
According to sources, both Siraj and Bumrah were subjected to ‘extremely offensive abuse’ by crowd members in the last three days.
According to a report by Sydney Morning Herald, venue officials have access to more than 800 security cameras at the ground and ‘because of the COVID-19 regulations put in place by the NSW government they know the name of every spectator (of around 10,000 people) who walked through the gates.’
India were bowled out for 244 in the first innings, trailing Australia by 94 runs in the Sydney test. Australia were 103-2 at the end of the third day’s play, taking a commanding lead of 198 runs in the second innings.