Harbhajan cleared of racist allegations against crowd

Brisbane, Mar 3 (UNI) Indian off-spinner Harbhajan Singh has been cleared of allegations according to which he had made racist taunts to sections of the crowd in Sydney during the first match of the CB Series finals against Australia and hence no action will be taken against him.

ICC match referee Jeff Crowe said in a statement, ''I have investigated the alleged incident with Cricket Australia's ground security officials after reading newspaper reports and viewing related photographs that have been published.

''After reviewing all available information, I conclude that there is no need to take any action against Harbhajan Singh.'' he said.

However, Indian team had earlier denied the allegations and team manager Bimal Soni said, ''This is the imagination of the Australian press, which has been trying to add pressure on Harbhajan at every moment.'' ''We do not talk about it, we only talk about the cricket on the field and we do not want to talk anything about these things,'' he added.

Former Australian captain Allan Border, who himself was present in the ground for the match, too, came out in support of Harbhajan and said, ''I am not too sure how serious it is.

''I mean I was at the ground yesterday and I was on that side of the ground and Harbhajan was copping a fair bit of stick from the crowd.

''I didn't notice any gestures at all and I thought he handled himself quite well to be quite honest,'' he added.


Story first published: Monday, March 3, 2008, 16:10 [IST]
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