Border tells India to stop ‘imperialist behaviour’

February 21st, 2008 - 2:16 pm ICT by admin  

A file-photo of Harbhajan Singh

Sydney, Feb 21 (IANS) Former Australian skipper Allan Border has asked India to stop its “imperialist behaviour” and ensure the Twenty20 revolution does not rip world cricket apart. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) vice-president Rajeev Shukla last week said Australia could face “serious consequences” if it abandoned its scheduled tour of Pakistan in April.

“They have probably had too much to say in matters even though they do have a fair say financially in the global game,” said Border of India, which also threatened to cancel its tour of Australia last month unless racial abuse charges against off-spinner Harbhajan Singh were dropped.

Australia’s tour of Pakistan has been delayed by a month and shortened from 48 to 30 days after Pakistan and Cricket Australia officials worked out a compromise deal to save the visit.

Border is quoted by The Herald Sun as saying India should not influence negotiations between Australia and Pakistan.

Many Australian players remain uncomfortable about touring Pakistan where a suicide car bomber killed 37 people and wounded around 100 in Parachinar prior to Monday’s national elections.

“It is an issue between Australia and Pakistan to sort out. There’s also independent advice taken, not just Australian security checking it out,” Border said.

“We go to the International Cricket Council and get them to give an assessment as well.”

The rebel Twenty20 Indian Cricket League has also decimated New Zealand and Pakistan by recruiting its star players, which Border said “wasn’t good for the game globally”.

Australia’s Test series with New Zealand next summer is shaping as a flop with star quartet Shane Bond (ICL), Craig McMillan (ICL) Scott Styris (IPL) and Stephen Fleming (IPL) deserting the Black Caps.

“Hopefully common sense prevails and the individuals concerned want to play for their country rather than just for money,” Border told Fox-Sports. “You can understand guys at the end of their career getting the temptation.”

Former Test batsman Mark Waugh said players defecting to the ICL “couldn’t be good for cricket”.

“It’s really diluting the standard. Twenty20 is a great game, it’s entertaining. But you can’t have it taking over one-day and Test cricket,” Waugh said.

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