Andrew Symonds and Michael Clarke are
two of Australian cricket’s biggest names when it comes to finishing matches,
batting down the order. Symonds and Clarke formed a formidable partnership.
Together they won several series in the early years of this millennium. Later
Clarke went on to become the captain of the Australian team and led them to the
2015 World Cup win Down Under.

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When Clarke was handed over the
leadership, Symonds was at the twilight of his career. And at this stage, his
equation with Symonds took a turn for worse. It reached a point when Clarke
sent Symonds back home from an ODI series for skipping a team meeting and
instead of going fishing.

Symonds, a hard-hitting all-rounder, criticised
Clarke for his captaincy in 2015, and the latter alleged that Symonds had once
turned up drunk to play an ODI for Australia in 2008.

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“Andrew Symonds went on TV to
criticise my leadership. I’m sorry, but he is not a person to judge anyone on
leadership,” Clarke wrote in his 2015 Ashes Diary. “This is a guy who
turned up drunk to play for his country. It’s pretty rich for him to be throwing

Now, on Sunday, speaking on The Brett
Lee Podcast, Symonds said that his relationship with Clarke was spoiled by the
money of IPL. In the inaugural season of IPL in 2008, Symonds became the most
valuable overseas player as he was bought by Deccan Chargers (now SunRisers
Hyderabad) for a sum of Rs 5.4 crore.

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“We became close. When he (Clarke)
came into the side I used to bat with him a lot. So, when he came into the side
I really looked after him. That built a bond,” Symonds told Lee on the
49th minute of the hour-long podcast.

“Matthew Hayden said to me — when
the IPL started, I got a pretty penny to go and play in the IPL — he identified
it as there was a bit of jealousy that potentially came into the relationship
(with Clarke) there.

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“I guess Money does funny things.
It’s a good thing but it can be a poison and I reckon it may have poisoned our
relationship. I’ve got enough respect for him to probably not go into detail
about what was said.

“My friendship with him is no
longer and I’m comfortable with that, but I’m not gonna sit here and start
slinging mud.”