They are swashbuckler on the fields and aggressive off the ground. And you say cricket is a gentleman's game. Not exactly, keeping in mind the ugly brawl at cricketer Yuvraj Singh's birthday bash.
How trivial can such matters be and why do players tend to lose their cool? At times they tend to take it a bit too far as in the case of former cricketer and parliamentarian Navjot Singh Sidhu, who has been sentenced to three years in jail for a road-rage killing 18 years ago.
Temper metre: Why does it happen that the best of cricket aces can't help but bring out the worst in them off the pitch? Psychologist Dr Samir Parekh explains, "It's not fair to say that only cricketers are aggressive. It is human to show anger. It's just that we expect so much out of our celebs that we expect them not to make mistakes. Otherwise, Yuvi's case is just a one-off."
Off the field: Well, if Parekh is right then what does Sidhu's case show? Says TV anchor and actress Mandira Bedi, "These incidents raise the debate whether cricket is still a gentlemen's game? Cricketer's skills should do the talking instead of such controversies. The whole point of aggression and passion comes from the pressures the cricketers face."
However, accusing media for highlighting such cases, former cricketer-turned-actor Salil Ankola says, "Cricketers are the worst targets. Everything they do is closely watched, scanned and pin-pointed. Moreover, some wannabes try and target the players at the wrong place and wrong time. In Yuvraj's case, the point that the Indian team is not doing well pushed his case into limelight." Now that the matter has been settled, Kim Sharma, who was present at Yuvi's birthday bash, adds, "I know Yuvraj cannot hit anyone! He is well-mannered and has etiquettes to behave with people."
However, for fans cricketers are demi-Gods and will remain to be so. Well, anything for the game.