Melbourne: International Cricket Council (ICC) chief Malcolm Speed today warned the Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland about the on-field behaviour of the Australian team.
While speaking on Channel 9, Speed said ''The Australian team is being criticised, members of the team are being criticised and they need to to be aware of that.''
He further said all the national teams should play the game in the right spirit adding ''We need to be clear what that means.'' Speaking on the removal of Steve Bucknor as umpire from the third Test, which is scheduled to be played at Perth, Speed said his replacement has stopped an international incident from becoming an international crisis.
''There was unhappiness about the umpiring, we put a new umpiring team in place. And we start again from the umpiring perspective in Perth and, hopefully, focus on the matters on the pitch rather than exacerbating the crisis,'' he added.
''We could have gone in banging the table and playing who blinks first', we could have turned what is already an international incident into an international crisis,'' Speed said.
The ICC has also brought in its chief referee, Ranjan Madugalle, to work with the two captains, Ricky Ponting and Anil Kumble, to try to resolve problems between the two teams.
However, the ICC chief admits that the Sydney Test match was played in an atmosphere riddled by racism claims, player behaviour issues and umpiring controversy and added the umpiring as one of the issues, which was easily fixed by replacing the umpires.