After the Sydney Test was marred by two incidents of racial abuse, India fast bowler Mohammed Siraj was once again targeted by a section of the crowd on the opening day of the fourth Test against Australia at the Gabba in Brisbane.
According to the Sydney Morning Herald, Siraj was called a ‘grub’ by some spectators.
“The guys behind me have been calling – shouting – both Washington and Siraj grubs,” Kate, a spectator, was quoted as saying by the newspaper.
“It started being targeted at Siraj and it was a chant similar to the SCG one (in which fans sang to the tune of Que Sera, Sera but changed the lyrics to Que Shiraz, Shiraz).
“But this time it was Siraj. I suspect it’s not a coincidence that it’s Siraj being targeted post the SCG stuff,” the spectator told the Australian daily.
According to the newspaper, at one point, a man in the crowd was also heard yelling, “Siraj, give us a wave, give us a wave, give us a wave. Siraj, you bloody grub.”
None of the Indian players fielding near the boundary ropes voiced a reaction to anything said by the crowd.
Apart from Siraj, debutant Washington Sundar was also subjected to the same taunt from the same section of the crowd. However, the rest of the 12,998 fans in attendance did not cause any behavioural concerns.
Earlier, Siraj was racially abused by spectators at the Sydney Cricket Ground on the third and fourth day of the drawn third Test. Play was stopped for about 10 minutes after Siraj’s complained of being targeted with offensive chants. Taking serious note of the matter, the BCCI, too, lodged an official complaint with the match referee.
CA had promised the strongest possible action against the offenders, which included the possibility of them being banned for life from the SCG.
The ICC condemned SCG incidents and sought an action-taken report from CA. Former and current cricketers also unequivocal in condemning the incidents.