Cricket, one of the most-watched and celebrated games across the globe, at times turns to be a dangerous one. ‘Beamers’ in cricket is considered to be the toughest and most dangerous delivery in the game of cricket. What is a beamer? It is a type of delivery in which the ball doesn’t bounce on the pitch. But it hits high on the batsman’s body while descending. The silent yet the well-known intention of the beamer is to hurt or intimidate the batsman. However, the beamers need not necessarily be intentional all the time; it could be due to sweaty hands or wet ball.
Beamer is also called as a bean-ball. In cricket, beamer is not legal, whereas bouncer is. The umpire issues a first ‘warning’ to a bowler and if the bowler continues to make a beamer in the same innings, he will be suspended from bowling in the match. Nowadays, the immediate punishment of a beamer is a no-ball and in T20 and one day matches, it’s a free hit.
Beamers have created many controversies in cricket, including issuing charges against the bowler. It has also caused tussles between the bowler and the batsman on the field. The beamers can get deadly when a pacer delivers it, as the time batsman gets to get out of the way is very little. The argument over beamer in the quarter-final of ICC world cup between India and Bangladesh is worth remembering. India was batting against Bangladesh and Rohit Sharma was the striker. In the 40th over, when India’s score was 195/3, the Bangladesh bowler Rubel Hossain delivered a full toss and the fielder took the catch. But the umpire gave a free hit and Rohit scored 137 helping his team to score a total of 302. The umpire’s decision to give a free hit created a huge rampage over social media as that free hit took away the game from the hands of Bangladesh. In the 2014 Asia Cup, AbdurRehman, a Pakistani bowler, bowled three consecutive beamers against Bangladesh and was banned from the match. In the 2003 world cup, WaqarYounis was also barred from bowling again for the match. The deadly beamers of Roy Gilchrist, a West Indies bowler, caused him to end his career early, which otherwise would have been a fabulous one. He unleashed a barrage of beamers and continued to attack the batsmen, resulting in this cricket career’s premature ending. Brett Lee, the famous Australian bowler, has also got waring from ICC for his dangerous bowling action. He once delivered a beamer at Sachin Tendulkar. It was not an intentional one as Lee came and apologised to Tendulkar and shook hands with him. This particular incident is often claimed as a ‘moment of sportsmanship’!