Former English cricketer Alastair Cook has apologised for spreading rumours that Australian wicket-keeper batter Alex Carey did not pay a barber after getting a haircut in a Leeds barbershop, Wisdon, a cricket news website reported.
While the hype around the Ashes Series 2023 has intensified, a claim was made during the third Ashes Test between England and Australia, with Cook suggesting that Australia’s Carey didn’t pay a barber after getting a haircut.
“[The barber] said, he hasn’t paid,” Cook had said while speaking on BBC Test Match Special on the opening day of the third Ashes Test.
“It was one of those cash-only ones, and he promised he would have a transfer later in the day, and this was just before he shut. This is a true story, I’m not making it up.”
Cook’s claims went viral, and the subject became a huge talking point, with Australia cricketer Steve Smith also getting into the debate and suggesting that his teammate did not get a haircut at the said barbershop.
“I can confirm that Alex Carey has not had a haircut since we were in London. Get your facts right The Sun,” wrote Smith on Threads, the newly-launched Twitter rival.
Cook later apologised, also while speaking on TMS.
“There’s also been a bit of fuss around on a rainy day, a bit of news about a haircut which might have been discussed on the radio the other day,” he said. “A case of mistaken identity, so I apologise for the mistaken identity to Alex Carey.”
The drama comes after Carey became a villain in England as he stumped England wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow on day five of the second Ashes Test at Lord’s.
The 31-year-old was targeted by the Headingley crowd on day one of the third Test, relentlessly booing the South Australian as he walked out to bat in the first innings.
The dismissal row also drew in the prime ministers of both nations as Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese defended his country’s Ashes cricket team.
His statement came after his UK counterpart said a dismissal during the second test was against the spirit of the game.
The controversy triggered long and loud booing from the crowd at Lord’s and saw Australian players verbally abused by MCC members in the stadium’s usually staid Long Room.