Birthday special: Sreesanth – Career timeline of India’s controversial pacer

Just like Hot and Cold are the two extreme opposites. So is the case with Sreesanth and his life state. Although the name Sreesanth does translate to the word calm in Hindi, the cricketer has been well known for his exuberant yet aggressive yet emotional yet indisciplined behaviour both on and off the field.

A seam bowler who could make the ball talk both ways along with his innate ability to bowl canny yorkers, the man from Kerala was an alarming pacer who could shell-shock the batters. Both with his dismissals and with his red-flagged send-offs. On the occasion of his birthday, we look at the timeline of his career:

Early Days- From being a leg-spinner in his childhood to embracing his journey as a fast bowler

2000 –  While getting encouraged by his elder brother for fast bowling and later following the footsteps of fellow Kerala pacer Tinu Yohannan, Sreesanth makes his entry into the MRF Pace Academy.

2002/03 –  Makes his first-class debut against Goa. Not only finishes his Ranji season with 22 wickets in seven matches but also gets selected for South Zone in the Duleep Trophy.

A quick uprise into the Indian team

2004 – Makes headlines by being the first bowler from Kerala to fetch a hat-trick against Himachal Pradesh.

2005 – Represents India B in the Challenger Trophy series where he gets well known for not only sledging Sachin Tendulkar but also grabbing his wicket. Being the highest wicket-taker of the tournament brings his India call against Sri Lanka in an ODI series in October.

2006 – Makes his Test debut against England at Nagpur in March. Becomes India’s leading pace bowler in the Caribbean tour. Grabs a fifer in the fourth Test at Kingston. Later on, in December, bowls a match-winning spell by bundling South Africa to a score of 84 at Johannesburg.

2007 – Takes Misbah-ul-Haq’s catch by making India win their first-ever T20 World Cup title.

2008 – Gets picked by KXIP for the IPL. Gets involved in an infamous ‘slap gate” incident with Harbhajan Singh. Finishes the IPL as second-highest wicket-taker (18).

Bad Boy Image

2009 – Joins Warwickshire in August where he closely improves his bowling under the mentorship of Allan Donald. Gets warning notices from the BCCI and KCA for violating the code of conduct.

2011–  Plays his last Test match against England at the Oval. Returns to competitive at the end of 2012 by battling a few injuries.

The match-fixing scandal

2013 –  Gets arrested in May along with two RR players on the charges of spot-fixing. In June, receives a bail from Delhi Court, however, in September gets imposed with a life ban by BCCI.

2015 – On July 25th, The MCOCA court dropped all charges against the three accused cricketers including Sreesanth.

2016 – Makes his entry into politics by joining BJP but loses the Kerala election against the Congress.

Gets the ball rolling

2019 –  On March 15, The Supreme Court removes the life ban and asks BCCI to reconsider his punishment.

2020 – BCCI reduces his life ban to seven years thereby allowing him to play the sport from September 2020.

2021 – Marks his return back to competitive cricket by representing Kerala in the SMAT 2021. And register in the IPL auction for the 2021 season.

2022 – Announces retirement from all forms of first-class cricket.