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‘No room for that in life or sport’ – Moeen Ali on ‘Osama’ claim and sledging

by Wisden Staff 3 minute read

Moeen Ali believes on-field intimidation and sledging needn’t be offensive, as he speaks out after he claimed an Australia international called him ‘Osama’.

An investigation of the incident has been closed after Cricket Australia said no fresh evidence had emerged after the England ace made the claims in his new autobiography.

“That was probably the one that obviously stands out,” Moeen told the BBC when asked about the on-field intimidation he has endured. “You always get some stuff from the crowd here and there as well but that was the one that really, not just upset me but you can’t believe someone’s actually said that.

Moeen Ali leaves the field after being dismissed by Nathan Lyon, MCG, December 28, 2017

“But you move on and try to perform for England. It’s all done now, it’s all in the past.”

The England all-rounder acknowledged that trying to put your opponent off is part of the game but believes that incident overstepped the line. “A hundred percent,” he said. “If that’s trying to put your opponent off then… There’s no room for that in life in general, not just in sports.

“There are ways of trying to put your opponent off and sometimes you don’t have to say anything. You can intimidate a player by just standing there. There are ways of doing it. It’s not my sort of way it. Sledging’s always been serious but in good humour as well – more of a mental thing rather than someone going personal or taking it too far.

“Personally, I don’t do anything. I don’t feel like I need to. You can have the passion, but it’s more important to be a good person and try and play cricket the right way.”

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