England captain Alastair Cook said Wednesday he believed India's complaint against James Anderson was a tactic designed to have his spearhead bowler miss some part of the ongoing series. (India Complain Against Anderson)
Anderson was charged by the International Cricket Council (ICC) on Tuesday for allegedly "abusing and pushing" Ravindra Jadeja during last week's drawn first Test at Trent Bridge. (Anderson-Jadeja Row Spices up Second Test)
If the charge is upheld by an ICC judicial commissioner, Anderson could be banned for as many as four Tests and England have responded by levelling a charge of their own against Jadeja. (Complaint Threatens to Sour Relations)
Cook speaking to reporters at Lord's, where the second Test of a five-match series starts on Thursday, accused India of making a "mountain out of a molehill" in an effort to try to get Anderson banned.
"I think so, I think that's pretty much where it's come from," Cook said Wednesday. "It's probably a little bit of a tactic by India." (ICC no Good at Handling On-Filed Showdowns: Chappell)
As for the incident itself, which has been graded as 'level three', the second-most serious on the ICC's list of potential offences, Cook adopted the role of Arsenal football manager Arsene Wenger, famous in England for never witnessing any controversial moment involving one of his players.
"I'm going to sound a little bit like Arsene Wenger and I genuinely didn't see it," said Cook.
"There's been towing and throwing between Jimmy, (England coach) Peter Moores and the ECB (England and Wales Cricket Board) and there has been a charge levelled back at Jadeja.
"We are surprised it's come to where it's come to but we can't let it be a distraction to the side.
"For Jimmy, all the lads will rally round him. He's a stalwart of our side."
Cook added he believed completely the version of events that Anderson had told him but that, under ICC regulations, he could not say any more about the incident itself.
However, he did add: "It's a big mountain out of a molehill, if I'm being totally honest.
"If it motivates him (Anderson) that would be great. The side don't need any more," said Cook of an England team without a win in their last nine Tests.