Australians unhappy with soft charge over Gambhir

October 30th, 2008 - 10:09 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Oct 30 (IANS) The Australian team is unhappy with the charge laid on Indian opener Gautam Gambhir by the International Cricket Council (ICC) after the batsman’s mid-pitch collision with all-rounder Shane Watson during the third Test match at the Ferozeshah Kotla here.During the opening day’s play, while taking a run Watson hurled some abuses against Gambhir, who stuck out his elbow that hit Watson.

Gambhir has been charged under clause C1 Level 2 of the ICC’s Code of Conduct, which states that players “shall at all times conduct play within the spirit of the game as well as within the Laws of Cricket”. Watson has been charged under the same clause, C1, but as a Level 1 offence.

But the Australian team is aggrieved that Match Referee Chris Broad didn’t invoke the Level 2.4 on Gambhir, which deals with “inappropriate and deliberate physical contact between players in the course of play,” Sydney Morning Herald reported.

Gambhir, on his part, had clarified Wednesday that the collision was just an accident.

“It wasn’t deliberate, it just happened. I don’t think I need to get into this argument about Watson. I feel that he had no options of getting me out. There was no chance he could have got me out. There wasn’t a need for me to stick my elbow out. It was an accident,” Gambhir said.

The Delhi opener, who had another run-in with Somin Katich, accused the Australian team of applying pressure tactics to get his wicket.

“It’s part of the game. They were really desperate to get me out because of the way I was batting. They were trying to break my concentration. The important thing was to just be there, be there in their eyes and not back out,” he added.

Cricket Australia operations manager Michael Brown denied that they had attempted to have Gambhir’s charge upgraded, saying it was a matter for the ICC.

Last year, Gambhir was accused of a similar incident with Pakistani all rounder Shahid Afridi. Both players claimed the contact was accidental but both were fined after then ICC chief executive Malcolm Speed used his powers to lay the charge.

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