Legendary India spinner Harbhajan Singh, who was involved in the Monkeygate Scandal with Andrew Symonds, paid his tribute to the former Australia all-rounder who was killed in a car accident in Queensland on Saturday. Harbhajan said that he was in shock after hearing the news of Symonds’demise. The off-spinner took to Twitter to pay his tribute to the 46-year-old former Australian all-rounder, saying the cricketing great went too soon.
Shocked to hear about the sudden demise of Andrew Symonds. Gone too soon. Heartfelt condolences to the family and friends. Prayers for the departed soul #RIPSymonds
— Harbhajan Turbanator (@harbhajan_singh) May 15, 2022
“Shocked to hear about the sudden demise of Andrew Symonds. Gone too soon. Heartfelt condolences to the family and friends. Prayers for the departed soul. #RIPSymonds,” tweeted Harbhajan.
Symonds had a cricket career full of controversies, but the biggest of them all was the ‘Monkeygate scandal’ in 2008. In a recent interview, Symonds revealed how his life changed after the Monkeygate incident.
On India’s infamous tour of Australia in 2007-08, Harbhajan was accused of passing a racial slur at Australian cricketer Andrew Symonds. What followed was a difficult time for Harbhajan who had to face a lot of criticism for his behaviour on the field. In a verbal altercation with Harbhajan, Andrew Symonds accused Harbhajan of using a racial slur. Harbhajan has said ‘Teri Maa Ki’ which Symonds heard as ‘Monkey’. ICC banned Indian spinner after the match but the ban was lifted as Sachin Tendulkar clarified that it was not a racial slur.
— Akash Kharade (@cricaakash) May 15, 2022
“From that moment on that was my downhill slide. I started to drink heavily as a result of it and my life was starting to dissolve around me felt the pressure and the weight of dragging those mates of mine into the cauldron of this cesspit that should never have got to this sort of point where we felt guilty,” Symonds had told Australian Broadcasting Corporation.
“I was dealing with it the wrong way. I felt guilty that I’d dragged my mates into something I didn’t think they deserved to be involved in,” Symonds had added.
The charismatic all-rounder played 26 Tests for Australia, scoring 1,462 runs at 40.61 and picking up 24 wickets with his off-spin and gentle medium-pace.