Melbourne: Shane Warne has steered away from criticising the contentious bowling action of Sri Lankan Muthiah Muralitharan after teammate Adam Gilchrist got himself into hot water.
Warne said on Wednesday that as Muralitharan's action has been deemed legal by the International Cricket Council, that should be good enough for his opponents. Australia's greatest wicket-taker played a straight bat here to the Muralitharan inquiries after Gilchrist was charged by the Australian Cricket Board with bringing the game into disrepute. No stranger to controversy himself, Warne acknowledged that Gilchrist had been put in a difficult situation by being asked for his opinion on such a hot topic. "The fact with Muralitharan is, I think his action will always create speculation with people, with Joe Public saying, 'does he or doesn't he (chuck)?'" Warne told reporters. "The ICC has cleared him to say he can play international cricket and I think that should be good enough for the players. "Unfortunately with his action what you don't want to happen is for young people in Sri Lanka to come up and copy his action and then not be able to play. "So what you've got to make sure of is whether he's legal? Yes, he's been cleared by the ICC, so you just get on with it." Warne declined to say whether he believed Gilchrist was guilty under the code of conduct, although he acknowledged the ACB had the right to charge him. Gilchrist has since apologised to Muralitharan for his comments, which he believed were made at a private function.
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