x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 22 January 2018

Gavaskar accuses match referees of anti-Asian bias again

Former Indian Test opener angry after Chris Broad fines bowler Zaheer Khan in the Mumbai Test.

MUMBAI // The former India captain Sunil Gavaskar has again accused the match referees of being biased against Asian players after Zaheer Khan was fined for a code of conduct breach. Khan was fined 80 per cent of his match fees by the match referee Chris Broad of England after he pleaded guilty to a level two charge following the second Test against Australia on Tuesday.

The left-arm paceman appeared to say something to the opener Matthew Hayden following the batsman's dismissal before tea on Monday's fourth day. "If he swore at him, if he abused him, he obviously deserves to get punished," Gavaskar said. "But let's not mince words here. Every time, it is always an Indian or a sub-continent player who gets hauled up, never the Australians. "There were a lot of incidents in the match.

"Do you remember Virender Sehwag batting in the second innings was given not out where everybody appealed and (Australia captain) Ricky Ponting came from extra cover towards the umpire and kept on asking again? "Now if that had been an Indian, the match referee would have taken him to task, fined him... This is where I think the ICC needs to actually get its act together." It was Khan at the receiving end in the first Test in Bangalore when the wicketkeeper Brad Haddin ruffled a few feathers by chatting away behind the stumps when the tailender was batting.

India won the second Test to take a 1-0 lead after the first Test ended in a draw. Gavaskar resigned as ICC cricket committee chairman in May after being asked to choose between his position and his job as a paid media pundit over concerns about a conflict of interest. In January, he claimed the match referee Mike Procter was biased after the South African found Harbhajan Singh guilty of racially abusing Andrew Symonds in the Sydney Test.

* Reuters