Banned for life from playing Cricket by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), for his involvement in spot-fixing in the 2013 IPL season, S Sreesanth says “he misses playing cricket” and that cricketers knew he was not part of the fixing scandal but had no “guts” to come out in open to advocate for him.
Speaking to NewsX in an exclusive interview, the former speedster said, “I have really not moved on and cricket is in my blood” and without naming anyone asserted that he was blamed for the same aggression for which other players are praised otherwise.
Opening up on the Indian Premier League (IPL) match-fixing scandal that led to lifelong suspension 34-year-old said that he always played the game with “heart on his sleeve” and when it was questioned no cricketer except Virender Sehwag came forward to speak for him. “Most of the cricketers knew I was not part of it (match fixing), they did not have guts to come out in open and speak up”, said Sreesanth.
“Viru Bhai was very friendly and very verbal” and defended me during the fixing allegations he added further.
The former India pacer Sreesanth who has already charted a new career course in movies said that he still plays cricket with his film crew whenever he finds time on the movie set. “I am bowling or batting with the staff all the time. I will be lying if I say I don’t miss cricket. I really do miss cricket,” he said.
Making a reference to Mohammad Amir of Pakistan International cricketer who was implicated in allegations of spot-fixing and handed a five-year ban, Sreesanth questioned that the bowler after having pleaded guilty ended up playing again for his country; however the same was not the case for him.
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“Even Mohammad Amir caught guilty, ended up destroying India in the Champions Trophy final against India. A person like him is getting a chance by ICC then why different rules for Sreesanth,” argued the former cricketer.
S Sreesanth was a right-arm fast-medium-pace bowler and a right-handed tail-ender batsman. He represented for Kerala in Ranji Trophy and was part of the winning team of inaugural Twenty20 World Cup in 2007.