ICC bowling proposals create confusion: Warne

Published: Wednesday, November 10, 2004, 23:53 [IST]
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Melbourne:Test cricket's leading wicket-taker Shane Warne said the new International Cricket Council (ICC) proposal on cricket's "chucking" controversy might create more confusion.

The Australian leg-spin wizard was responding here to news that an ICC committee, comprising former Test players and chaired by former India captain Sunil Gavaskar, had recommended a new rule allowing bowlers to straighten their arms by up to 15 degrees.

Under the proposed new ruling, which will be put to the ICC chief executives' committee of the 10 Test-playing countries at its next meeting, here next February, almost all modern bowling actions would be legal.

Warne said it should be left up to umpires on the field to no-ball bowlers for suspect actions.

Sri Lankan spin ace Muttiah Muralitharan, Warne's rival for the all-time wickets record, would be able to resume bowling his controversial "doosra" delivery under the proposal.

Warne was careful not to single out Muralitharan or any other bowler when he discussed the proposal on Thursday.

"I think it might (create confusion) -- how does an umpire tell if it's 12 degrees, 10 degrees, nine, 13, 14, whatever it is when it happens like 'that'," Warne said.

"I'm not saying anyone does (throw), all I'm saying is that any bowler that plays, if the umpire is standing there and they think someone throws the ball, they call him and then it goes to that panel."

Former England batsman Geoff Boycott described the proposals as a "sad day for cricket."

"I think it's been brought in through pressure from Sri Lanka and Murali's supporters," he said in England.

"It's a sad day for cricket that this pressure can allow Muralitharan to bowl whatever he wants."

Warne said he was very confident of playing in next week's opening Test against New Zealand in Brisbane.

He missed this month's fourth Mumbai Test against India after breaking a thumb in nets batting practice.

"The thumb is fine at the moment, it's healing well and hopefully it will be fine for Brisbane," he said.

The first Test at the Gabba gets underway on November 18.

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