Cricket may seem like one of the most pleasant and polite games the sporting world has to offer. But, once you get down to the crease and listen to what the players say to each other, you'll realise, it isn't.
Despite being called the gentleman's game, cricket surely doesn't stop cricketers from taking a dig at their opponents – infamous as sledging. It is a tool used by players to get into the mind of their opponent and weaken their concentration by insulting or verbally intimidating them.
And who could do it better than the closest person to the batsman, the wicket-keeper himself? Standing right behind the batsman, a wicket-keeper has all the ways to play with the batsman's head. And if words can kill, they certainly can distract a batsman from playing his natural game.
Here are a few instances where wicket-keepers managed to play with the batsman's head:1. Kiran Moore
The 1992 World cup is famous for introducing the concept of coloured jersey's. But other than that, another thing that caught attention at the mega event was the altercation between Pakistan's Javed Miandad and India's Kiran Moore.
The former Indian wicket-keeper was stumping and appealing on almost every run, which irked Javed. They both had a brief argument before resuming to their respective positions for the next ball. But, just when the spectators thought that the drama was finished, Javed Miandad came up with a hilarious response to Moore by imitating his way of appealing, that is by jumping all over.2. MS Dhoni
When we talk of wicket-keeping, how can we forget MS Dhoni? Despite being the calmest player on the field, his wit and words can sometimes make you fall off your chair, just because of laughing so hard. The best part about our 'Captain Cool' is that he hardly talks to the batsman, but still manages to affect his mind by talking 'about him' to the bowler. That's the best trick that anyone can apply. Making the batsman so conscious about his own shots that he ends up committing a mistake.3. Rishabh Pant
Over the years, the clashes between India and Australia have provided some really exciting games to the spectators. The rivalry between the two cricket powerhouses is what makes theirs a thrilling spectacle. And, India's recent tour Down Under was no different.
Filled with exciting moments, the Test series brought the duel between Rishabh Pant and Tim Paine to the fore. While Paine called him a 'babysitter', Pant, too, gave the Aussie Test captain a piece of his mind. Indian captain Virat Kohli, too, joined in with the 'Temporary Captain' jibe. For a 21-year-old who was playing in his first tour of Australia, it was quite ballsy on Pant's part to sledge the opposition captain.4. Mark Boucher
Do you remember the Test between South Africa and Zimbabwe in 2005? Actually, why would you? There is literally no reason to remember that game as the Proteas, expectedly, won the encounter by an innings, despite three of their four fast bowlers going off injured on Day 1.
But, during the one-sided contest, Mark Boucher revealed his funny side as he took aim at Tatenda Taibu in what eventually turned out to be a hilarious banter. He began by telling Taibu that he only looks to score runs when there is one seam bowler in the field. And, when Taibu played a drive towards short cover, the South African wicket-keeper once again teased the Zimbabwean by saying: "That's a big shot Tatenda." Another side of Mark Boucher came to the fore that day.