Life is a perpetual drama. Full of vibrant colors in a moment, dark, sad and shady on the other. Sports is a perfect depiction of life’s definition and it covers all of life’s elements viz. money, career, happiness, grief, death and more. As human beings we are full of emotions and nothing is better than ’sports’ at brimming them up.
People fight in the stands, behave reckless on the field, cheat, take erratic steps to win – sometimes sports itself turns crazy. Here we take a look at some of the controversial events on the contrasting shades of sports.
Zinedine Zidane head butts Marco Materazzi:
Zinedine Zidane, the iconic midfielder of France and Real Madrid, was involved in a ramming ‘headbutt’ incident in the final of FIFA World Cup 2006 held in Germany. The insane occurrence took place due to the provocation of emotions from the Italian defender Marco Materazzi. The France’s maestro said in post-match talks that the insult Materazzi offered was very personal and concerned his mother and sister.
The finale became more of an action movie drama than a sports encounter. Zidane was immediately sent off in the last match of his jeweled career of achievements with a low bow in front of 69000 fans. It was a shame to see one of the greatest players of the game to show such an impulsive and unethical behavior on the field.
The demise of Hansie Cronje:
When the first case of match-fixing came into picture, the cricket world was taken by a storm. The most worshiped and madly viewed game was being manipulated behind the close doors. The game was being sold for money.
The gentleman’s game was being sold match by match by the most laid back captain of that time – South Africa’s Hansie Cronje. He was condemned of selling his country’s pride in tournaments at Sharjah and during the India tour. He even tried to frame Gibbs, Boje, Kallis, Boucher and Klusener.
On 15th June 2000 Cronje confessed of taking large sums of money and begged for forgiveness for letting the team, the country and the fans down. The offence was such that the peace loving Nelson Mandela also chastised Cronje – “you have made a serious mistake”. Subsequently on 11th October 2000 he was banned from cricket for life.
After strenuous two years of inexorable pain and shame when it was all going fine in Hansie’s life, the news broke on 1st June 2002 that his plane crashed into Cradock peak.
Bob Woolmer’s mysterious exit:
Did he really die of asphyxia after his team Pakistan lost to Ireland in the World Cup? He also appeared to have been suffering from diarrhoea and toxic substances like cypermethrin were found in his stomach. Although the doctors and pathologists declared that Woolmer died a natural death, nothing was able to explain the cut found on his nose and the broken bone in his neck. Amid all speculation of match-fixing, the case was brought to rest.
After a continued rage over the incident, Dr. Ere Seshiah, the pathologist who conducted the autopsy, revealed a few photographs from a fellow doctor’s cellphones which indicated the involvement of a third party. But Deputy Commissioner of Police Mr. Shields had shut the case stating – “It is deeply puzzling that if there was ‘something between the hands of the assailant and the neck of the victim’, it has not been detected by an experienced pathologist”.
Monica Seles stabbed in Germany:
Tennis player Monica Seles was stabbed by a mentally unbalanced German man who was described as a loner, claiming he was only trying to hurt Seles during a match in Hamburg. The culprit, a fan of German tennis star Steffi Graf, hoped that by injuring Seles his idol Graf would be No. 1 again.
At the time of the incident, Seles had won eight Grand Slam titles and was ranked No. 1 in the world. On April 30, 1993, it was during a game break in her match against Magdalena Maleeva at the Hamburg Open when the accused, Gunter Parche, leaned over and stabbed her between the shoulders with a knife. Parche was quickly taken into custody by security officials and Seles was taken to the hospital. She recovered from her injuries but the trauma kept still remained and she didn’t play again professionally for another two years.
Mike Tyson bites off Evander Holyfield’s ear:
In a boxing match fought on June 28, 1997 for the WBA Championship, Mike Tyson bit Evander Holyfield ear off. The result - Tyson got disqualified and Holyfield was crowned the champion.
On the eventful day, the fight was dominated by Holyfield for the first two rounds which included a couple of unintentional and harmless headbutts on Tyson. In a fiery response to which Tyson came on in the 3rd round and bit of a one-inch piece of Holyfield’s right ear and spitted it on the floor.
The referee spotted it, stopped the fight for sometime to resume the fight again and witnessed the unbelievable – Tyson bit the left ear this time forcing an abrupt end to the encounter disqualifying Mike Tyson. Tyson quoted after the fight “it was retaliation for the headbutts”.
World is a strange place to live in though. Reportedly Mike Tyson and Evander Holyfield are the best pals today.