Symonds had 'complimented' Ishant

Updated: 26 February 2008 15:01 IST

The Aussie all-rounder claims he had actually said "Good ball, champ" to Ishant, who misinterpreted it as abuse.

Symonds had 'complimented' Ishant

Melbourne:

If Andrew Symonds is to be believed, then the controversial all-rounder had congratulated Ishant Sharma after his stumps were rattled by him. And the rookie Indian bowler took the "compliment" as sledging.

The 19-year-old was fined 15 per cent of his match fee after his retaliatory outburst following Symonds' dismissal in the 47th over.

The pair exchanged words as Symonds walked off, and Sharma was spoken to by on-field umpires Daryl Harper and Tony Hill.

According to The Age, Symonds has told teammates that he uttered, "Well bowled, champ" to Sharma before the rookie mouthed off and pointed towards the pavilion, apparently misinterpreting the gesture. It was then that Symonds fired back with his own unpleasantries.

Sharma was later fined by the match referee while Symonds went scot-free. India immediately pointed the finger back at Australia and said the only reason a formal complaint was not made was to avoid another drawn-out judicial hearing, similar to the hearing that followed the Harbhajan Singh-Symonds racism row during the Sydney Test.

According to new hall of fame wicketkeeper Ian Healy, lip-readers in Channel Nine's broadcast van discerned Symonds to say: "Good ball, champ."

"Whether it had a bit of cynicism in it or not, I'm not sure," Healy said. "Sharma was holding his standards pretty well, and then when he thought Symonds said something worse, he carried on in a way that is a little too personal for mine."



Topics : Cricket Ishant Sharma
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