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Lee accused of chucking | February 10, 2003 12:01 IST

England's hopes of avoiding playing a match in Zimbabwe rest with the International Cricket Council who have agreed to review security arrangements in the troubled country.

The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) submitted further concerns about arrangements for security in Harare to the ICC on Sunday.

England are due to play their first match of the World Cup in Zimbabwe on Thursday but it has been strongly rumoured that the players would prefer to boycott the match.

They received what were believed to be death threats last week, although the players have since been told that the threats were a hoax.

A decision on their participation in the match has been delayed until the ICC responds to the ECB's submission.

"The ICC received some new information relating to a security concern from the ECB on Sunday evening," confirmed ICC chief executive Malcolm Speed.

"That information has been provided to National Deputy Commissioner of Police Andre Pruis, South Africa's second mostsenior police officer.


Jubilant skipper Carl Hooper said Brian Lara reminded the world of his undoubted class with a match-winning century in the opening game of the World Cup.

Lara had not played any international cricket since falling ill in the ICC Champions Trophy in September last year.

But the left-hander belied his absence from the game to earn man-of-the-match honours in a pulsating affair.

"Brian showed what a world class player he is," Hooper said.

Batting first, West Indies looked badly out of sorts as they limped to 30 for two after 16 overs. And Lara was dropped first ball before settling into stride and playing a classic one-day knock.

"The first 10-15 overs was tough but then Brian came in and showed what a tremendous player he is," Hooper said.

Brett Lee, Shoaib Akhtar and Muttiah Muralitharan have been accused of chucking -- again.

Pointing the finger this time is World Cup television commentator and former New Zealand wicketkeeper Ian Smith in his new book, 'Outrageous Cricket Moments', released on the eve of the Australia-Pakistan game at the Wanderers in Johannesburg.

Lee was mentioned only briefly as Smith saved his best ammunition for Shoaib and Muralitharan.

"I have a suspicion Brett Lee throws some deliveries, especially when he's seeking extra pace," is Smith's lone comment about the Australian.

The three of them have been cleared by the International Cricket Council, although they all have doubters, Shoaib and Muralitharan more than Lee. Smith ranks among them.

"The Sri Lankan off-spinner throws rather than bowls the ball," he writes.

"I've heard all about how he's had a deformity since birth and is therefore unable to straighten his right arm. If that's the case, then that's bad luck for Murali. He's still breaking the laws of cricket and therefore should not be allowed to bowl.

"Sadly, I've never regarded Murali's achievements highly," Smith continues. "He's not alone in bluffing them. Shoaib Akhtar has a very dubious action. I'm not surprised many of the world's batsmen have questioned its legality and I am surprised he has been cleared to continue."


British journalists in Zimbabwe to cover the World Cup will be expelled from the country if England do not agree to fulfill their fixture in Harare on Thursday, according to an official from the Department of Information and Publicity.

Edward Mamutse repeatedly told yesterday that, if the England players refused to play the match, the journalists would be told to leave. This would be in direct contravention of the International Cricket Council's rules and will further increase the state of unease in the England camp as they decide whether to play the Pool A match.

"It's totally chaotic," one journalist said yesterday. "My accreditation has still not been sorted out because the printing press has broken down.

"This is months and months after it should have been finalised. There appears to be no rhyme or reason for expelling us from the country.

"We're here to cover the tournament and they're saying that if England don't come, we'll have to leave the country."

Last night an ICC spokesman said: "This isn't acceptable and we're looking into the situation. There seem to be inconsistencies."


Pakistan's experienced left-handed opener Saeed Anwar is likely to miss the all-important World Cup Group 'A' clash against Australia on Tuesday.

Saeed, hit on the elbow by a Shoaib Akhtar thunderbolt in the nets, has not recovered fully from the injury and the team management is unlikely to gamble with him.

Pakistan contingent arrived from Cape Town on Sunday afternoon after attending the opening ceremony at Newlands and had a practice session at the Wanderers later in the afternoon.

Apart from Saeed, all players seemed fit and eager to take on everybody's favourites Australia, in a match that could be a forerunner to the final result of the World Cup.

Saeed's absence could be a big blow for Pakistan as he is no doubt a class act in his own, especially when considering the openers have not done too well in recent outings.

Saeed's likely replacement is Saleem Elahi. The right-hander is expected to open the innings with the flamboyant Shahid Afridi with utility all-rounder Abdul Razzaq once again filling the vital number three slot.

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Number of User Comments: 8

Sub: ian smith's talk about murali is all rubbish

ian smith doesn't even know the rules of cricket. mister smith ... the rules state that you CAN NOT HAVE RELATIVE MOTION IN THE ARM ...

Posted by viv


guys being indian i should be supporting india but you know the disasterous results produced by india in new zealand and also losing the practice ...

Posted by Anoop

Sub: Mr Smith's Comment

I think Ian seems to have suddenly fallen ill to an attack of less cricket flowing through his brains and more in his emotions no ...

Posted by Tiger

Sub: Murali's a chucker!

Murali's a chucker, plain and simple. The more the number of people who come out with these rightful views, and the sooner, the better.

Posted by Asher Pinto

Sub: Response to Ian Smith's article

Mr. Ian Smith did you show some partiality while naming a few chuckers. You forgot thebig one from your country Kyle Mills. If he is ...

Posted by Kalyan


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