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Cricketers' boorish conduct stumps media

May 07, 2004 20:01 IST

It was certainly not cricket when some of India's leading players ridiculed the media in Delhi on Friday with their boorish behaviour.

Media persons were treated with sheer disdain by the cricketers, who refused to reply to queries at a promotional event until being cajoled by the organizers.

The organizers said a press conference was not supposed to take place, but hastily apologized upon realizing that the invite clearly mentioned one would be held.

Visibly disinterested, the reluctant players, led by India vice-captain Rahul Dravid, obliged, albeit for a few minutes.

But questions were summarily dismissed or received terse replies.

When a scribe asked why this disdain for the Fourth Estate, Yuvraj Singh replied: "No, it is not so. It is very important to deal with the media, but sometimes they ask questions that can be harsh. They should have a decent way of asking things."

A harmless query by a reporter saw Harbhajan Singh burst into sarcastic laughter. He was joined in by Yuvraj.

Protests against the humiliating behaviour only saw the 'stars' react angrily and retort: "What is your problem. We want to laugh; that's it!"

Another scribe was told by Rahul Dravid to "go home and do some reading first" before putting questions to him.

When a reporter tried to say something, he was rudely told by Dravid not to interrupt. "Don't speak in between. Don't give me ideas. I know what I have to say."

Earlier, the "press conference" was delayed by more than an hour and clueless reporters were kept waiting on the pretext that Dravid's flight was delayed. It was later learnt that the cricketers were very much present at the venue but busy shooting for a commercial.

A senior journalist, hurt by the proceedings, said: "What have the players done which gives them a right to behave like this? Only after 11 years they have managed to win a Test series abroad."

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