Attila the Pun
Wednesday, April 21, 2004
You don't say..

What any person with a working eye and a rudimentary knowledge of cricket could tell you is now official - Murali is a chucker.

The official report into his action has found that he extends his arm 10 degrees when bowling his 'doosra'. The maximum allowed for a spinner is 5 degrees.

Predictably, the Sri Lankan cricket board have claimed that there is nothing untoward, and that most bowlers exceed the 5 degrees.

Malcolm Speed, head of the ICC, has actually found some backbone, and stated that not only are the tolerances based on expert evidence, but that if Murali gets reported again, then the ICC will convene its own Bowling Review Group. This will have the power to suspend Chucky for up to 12 months.

The funny thing is that Murali couldn't even bowl his doosra legally when he knew that he was being recorded and tested officially. He managed to send down some legal deliveries when his usual action was tested, and was therefore allowed to go back to chucking when actually playing.

Admittedly Terry Jenner is not an unbiased observer, as Murali is going to beat Jenner's student in the wicket stakes, but he is certainly an expert on spin bowling and coaching. He thinks Murali chucks, and laments the fact that kids try and emulate the delivery. Not a single one can manage it without throwing the ball.

If the ICC stands up to sub continent bullying, and doesnt change the rules, I wonder if there will be an umpire or match referee with the cojones to say what everyone is thinking - and no ball Murali when he next whips out his doosra.

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