No racism in ball-tampering row: Ehsan Mani

Published: Friday, August 25, 2006, 23:53 [IST]
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London, Aug 24 (UNI) Former ICC Chief Ehsan Mani has rubbished suggestions of racism on part of Darrell Hair in the ball-tampering row and said the controversy might have erupted because of the communication gap between Pakistan captain Inzamam-ul Haq and the Aussie umpire.

''I do not see anything racial in what has happened and a split between the Asian countries and the white countries led by England and Australia is not going to happen,'' Mani, who recently retired as president of the International Cricket Council, told Daily Telegraph.

Pakistan media and former cricketers had accused Hair of being a ''racist'' and of being biased towards sub-continental players.

Pakistan Cricket Board had also written to the ICC that Hair should not been made umpire in any future Test featuring Pakistan, a move which would split the cricketing world.

''There is a very rich cultural diversity in the family of the ICC but people do not make enough allowance for that. I have been banging on about it for three years. Just because you and I speak English does not mean we think like Englishmen. Inzamam, for instance, does not speak English very well and there could have been a communication gap between him and Darrell Hair which contributed to Sunday's events,'' Mani said.

The row erupted after Pakistan refused to take the field after the tea break on the fourth day of the fourth and final test against England when Hair accused the tourists of ball-tampering, penalised them five runs and offered England's batsmen the choice of a replacement ball.

The test match was subsequently forfeited and awarded to England.

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