Sydney: Former Australian Test opening batsman Michael Slater on Monday apologised for an outburst at the media at a Sydney club cricket match last weekend.
The 31-year-old veteran of 74 Tests said he was in a state of "shock and disappointment" at the time but it did not excuse his behaviour. Playing his first innings since being axed from the New South Wales state team, Slater hurled his helmet and swore at reporters and photographers after being forced to retire hurt when cut over the eye by a rising delivery. His apology followed a newspaper report that his $ 100,000-a-year contract with the Australian Cricket Board was in jeopardy with the ACB calling for a report on the incident. "Following the incident, I wish to extend an apology for my actions," said Slater in a statement issued through the NSW Cricket Association on Monday. "Having had time to review the incident, I regret my reaction to members of the media. As you'd understand, I'd just been struck in the face, and was bleeding from the gash above my eye which needed eight stitches. "I was in a state of shock, and disappointment, that my comeback innings had finished in that fashion. While that doesn't excuse my behaviour, I'd ask for some understanding from the media." Slater slipped out of first-class cricket after a poor domestic summer following his sacking from the Australian side for the final Ashes Test in England last August to make way for the return of Justin Langer. A dashing right-hander, Slater scored 5,312 Test runs at an average of 42.83 with 14 hundreds and was dismissed nine times in the 90s. He was the opening partner with former Australian captain Mark Taylor throughout the 1980s and 1990s.
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