Cricket commentator sparks uproar over 'ridiculous' blame game

Former Indian Test cricketer Sanjay Manjrekar has left fans picking their jaws up off the floor after sharing his opinion on Shannon Gabriel’s clash with Joe Root on Tuesday.

The West Indian bowler was warned by umpires for abusive language after a confrontation with the England skipper during the third Test in St Lucia.

Root later refused to divulge what was said, but stump microphones overheard him telling Gabriel: “Don’t use it as an insult. There’s nothing wrong with being gay.”

Umpires Rod Tucker and Kumar Dharmasena spoke to Gabriel afterwards and reportedly told the match referee about what they’d heard.

Joe Root fired back at a Shannon Gabriel remark in an exchange partly picked up by the stump microphone. Pic: Getty

While many in the cricket world applauded Root for calling out homophobia, Manjrekar left plenty scratching their heads.

“After Sarfraz it’s Shannon Gabriel now who could be in trouble thanks to the stump mics,” he wrote on Twitter.

“#ICC must brainstorm and decide if increased use of stump mics is actually good for the game or not.”


The 53-year-old, who moved into commentating after retiring from the game, has a reputation among Indian cricket fans for making outlandish statements.

His reference to Sarfraz Ahmed follows the Pakistan captain receiving a four-match ban from the ICC after a racist remark towards South Africa’s Andile Phehlukwayo was picked up by the stump microphones.

The situation appears cut and dry: players should not verbally abuse opponents, particularly and especially not with racist, homophobic or otherwise offensive language.

While it remains to be seen if Gabriel will be punished – the comment that led to Root’s reply was not picked up by the microphones – Manjrekar certainly missed the point of the debate.

Cricket fans from all over the world attempted to enlighten the 37-Test player: