An enraged Harbhajan Singh has slammed former ICC umpire Darrell Hair for his remark “role models for chuckers” directed at him, Saqlain Mushtaq and Muttiah Muralitharan after ICC’s recent clamp down on illegal bowling action leading to bans on a number of bowlers.
“This is too much. Hair is crossing the limits and seems to have gone mad,” the 35-year-old offspinner was reported as saying.
“We were always within the permissible limit. Murali and I were cleared by the ICC more than once. Why didn’t Hair object to my bowling then?,” Harbhajan, who was tested for his bowling action twice in 1999 and 2005 but cleared on both occasions, said. “Was it because he was afraid of losing his job as an ICC umpire? We are not son-in-laws of the ICC,’ the India offspinner said added.
“Nowadays, a lot of spinners are trying to bowl doosra, which was invented by us. It doesn’t necessarily mean they are bending the arm more than the limit. The doosras can be bowled without breaching the rule,” the Punjab cricketer said.
Hair’s controversial remarks appeared in the Sydney Morning Herald a couple of days back, where he singled out the three offspinners from the subcontinent.
“I said it in the late ‘90s that if something wasn’t done about it you’d have a generation of chuckers on your hands. They try to emulate Harbhajan Singh, Saqlain Mushtaq and Muralitharan and that’s the problem,” Hair told SMH.
“The ICC has set a standard for bowlers and are using latest technology. Hair should stop challenging technology and better keep his mouth shut,” Harbhajan added in his retaliation a day later.