South African fast bowler Kagiso Rabada is amongst the best pacers currently, along with the likes of Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins, Trent Boult and Jasprit Bumrah.
Moreover, Rabada is also renowned for his antics on the field as well as his aggressive send-offs to the batsmen.
It started with the unplayable yorker bowled to Ben Stokes during a Test match in England in 2017. Rabada was loud to use a curse word in the jubilation of scalping the wicket of Stokes.
However, it escalated with the ‘Shoulder-gate’ during the Port Elizabeth Test match between Australia and South Africa, in the infamous 2018 series.
The Johannesburg-born, in aggression, came in contact with Steve Smith during his extended run-up, using his shoulder. Also, he screamed at David Warner post dismissal.
After dodging an eminent ban, Rabada was allowed to feature in the remainder of the series, albeit, accumulating demerit points.
During the England tour of South Africa in 2019-20, Rabada was eventually suspended after collecting a fourth demerit point in a 24-month period for an exaggerated celebration.
The Protea ace bowler came too close to England captain Joe Root on that occasion. As a result, he had to miss the series-deciding Test match earlier this year.
In a recent interview, Rabada has shrugged off all misconceptions regarding him being short-tempered.
“Lot of people feel like I have a short temper. I don’t think so. It’s just passion. Also if you look at sledging, it’s part of the game. That’s what every fast bowler does,” Rabada told Delhi Capitals (DC) during an Instagram Live chat session.
“There’s no fast bowler who is going to be nice to a batter. It’s not like you being personal and telling people about their family or whatever,” added the 25-year old.
Given the amount of effort bowlers put in to obtain their wickets, Rabada felt that it is only natural for bowlers to display passion.
“You celebrate the wicket, and after the game, you are going to shake the guy’s hand and respect the craft. Most of the time, I’m not really aggressive on the field. But that’s just international cricket. Every player wants to be the best. That’s just the drive coming out,” explained the 5th rank bowler in the world, in both Tests and ODIs.
“Sometimes, emotion can ignite you. And that’s when I feel like I’m the most dangerous because that’s when I let everything loose and stop thinking and everything becomes automatic. That’s for me when I bowl my best is when I’m not thinking,” concluded Rabada.