Australian Cricket's genuine strive to transition from the bad old ways into a more ethical and morally strong world, has been provided a jolt by Pakistan skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed, where he has claimed that the just concluded 2-match Test series between the two countries wasn't played in "an especially polite atmosphere" and said, while there were no abuses from the opposition camp, the players weren't shy either.
Ever since, the ugly ball-tampering incident in South Africa, Australia has undergone cultural reviews for their players' on-field behaviour. Under Tim Paine, there have been actions taken to ensure there come across a greater respect for the game and the team they are up against.
But, Sarfaraz Ahmed disagrees. He, when asked whether there was any change from the Australian teams in the past in this one, suggested encountering continuous on-field chatter and named Nathan Lyon to be one of the players who started it, where the off-spinner asked him whether the captain was playing for his own hundred or the team cause during the second innings at Abu Dhabi.
"We had quite a bit of chatter throughout with him [Lyon], he spoke a lot and we did as well," Sarfraz said. "I told him that you've had a six hit off you, if I was in your place I would want to be hit for another six by keeping mid-on up."
"It was nothing unusual," he stressed, "they were also playing. You can say yes, they are also going through a process and are trying to fix things after what has happened with them, but it wasn't like it was an especially polite atmosphere out there."
Sarfaraz also cleared that the Pakistani side under him isn't willing to just let go being abused and can give back in the same way of language that they get offered.
"There's a saying pari lakri ko choona nahi chahiye(don't go around seeking trouble)," he said, "If you go to Australia or South Africa, you know there you are already fighting such top teams, you're fighting with bounce, with swing, with seam, then if you start fighting the players you're making it more difficult for yourself."
And, further emphasized, "It's a simple formula, when you are batting, don't look for trouble. Just play cricket and concentrate on your performance," before signing off with, "You're already playing such top teams. If some guy does say something to you, if he says something personal, then ok you can talk back, but otherwise you don't need to say anything. Play and perform."
(Inputs from ESPNcricinfo)