Monday, August 28, 2006

BALL TAMPERING ROW

PREDICTABLE REACTIONS

The crisis triggered by the allegation of ball tampering in the Oval test has thrown up the familiar reactions from everyone.

The Aussies stood up in support of their beloved countryman Darrel Hair. Former captains and players were unanimous in their admiration for Hair. The Prime Minister of Australia took time off his busy schedule to speak on the matter.

The Sri Lankan cricket officials were very quick to condemn the actions of Hair. It was Hair who first no balled Muralitharan. So this reaction from the islanders was hardly surprising.

Pakistan as a country felt outraged and hurt. Allegations of racial discrimination flew thick and fast. The old bogey of reverse swing once again came into the spotlight. The part time politician Imran Khan used this opportunity to allege conspiracy.

The Indians have not been able to take a clear stand on this issue. Poor Niranjan Shah was in no position to articulate the stand of the BCCI. Many Indians feel that the whole issue is nothing but racial discrimination. Navjot Sidhu and Ajay Jadeja ‘admitted’ that ball tampering is something that goes on a regular basis in the domestic scene.

The bomb in Colombo shocked the South Africans and so they flew to home. But with the one-dayers between Pakistan and England in doubt, the Proteas expressed their intentions to fill the void caused by the pull out of Pakistan.

The ICC was caught in a quandary with the initial support to Hair receding following the offer of a ‘golden handshake’ from the Umpire. David Richardson of the ICC, however, is confident of Hair’s tenure in the elite panel.

Predictable reactions but what does the future hold?

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