Crio’s Q: chuckers and all who (don’t) sail with them?

A rare Sri Lankan visit to the MCG revives memories of Darrel Hair’s bravery and its implications.
I’m in the “Murali chucks and is a blight on the game” camp. I refuse to ever watch him throw.
A gutless ICC created a monster.
Now Boof Lehmann has tagged Marlon Samuels as a chucker.
Johan Botha, of course, has been convicted but seems to be on bail as Redbacks’ skipper!
What can be done?
I don’t like the “bend” the rules (sorry about the pun!) approach.
Nor can we adopt a decriminalize approach, such as the ludicrous solution Henry Lawson proposed over ball-tampering (“allow it”, he declared).
Has the game been irrevocably damaged? Or is there a way back?


  1. Crio

    Couldn’t agree more. I was interested in an article the other day in which Murali, on his return to playing at the G, said he had ‘forgiven’ Hair.

    Hair as the umpire in charge called Murali for a breach of the rules, which was confirmed when the ICC changed the rules to suit him.

    I am sure Murali was and is a lovely bloke, was an inspiration to his country and couldn’t help it. However none of that detracts from the fact that he was outside the established rules of the game and benefitted from it.

    Hair’s treatment by the Asian block of the ICC was disgraceful, as it was after the Pakistan test that was forfeited in the UK.

    Murali criticism is often seen as at best, blind Warne supporting, and at worst, racist both of which avoid the core point of his action. It goes to the argument that comments about race or criticisms about those of a racial minority, are in themselves, racist, all of which stifle reasonable argument.

    Murali threw the ball, pure and simple. Rules were then changed to accomodate one player. Since then, any comment to the contrary, by Gilchrist etc is pounced upon.

    It is I agree a blight on the game and forever, to many of us, Murali’s record will have an * next to it.


  2. I agrre entirely.

    Funnily enough, Lehmann is alleged to be bringing the game in to disrepute…shoot the whistleblower.
    I only just discovered that Samuels plays in the same BB side as Murali. How hilarious that there is no mention of the Sri Lankan idol in the same match report.
    Lehmann’s comments may have been a bit indiscreet with the Windies due here soon.

  3. Murali still chucks,courtesy of the BBL.I saw one delivery and had to change channels.
    Samuels was banned from the IPL,so is very suspect, but I’m unaware of Botha’s status outside Australia. If bowlers can be banned from changing from bowling right-arm to bowling left-arm or vice-versa ,as it is a ( unfair) perceived advantage,surely bowling with a bent arm is even more of an unfair advantage and should be banned.
    What would happen if a batsman,(not a batter!),dismissed by a chucker,referred the legality of the delivery to the off-field umpire?

  4. ref D.Hair

  5. He’s a chucker. So what? They’re not playing cricket.

  6. You are right but wrong…

  7. Murali doesn’t chuck. Watch him. It’s bending and straightening that makes a chucker. Murali doesn’t do that.

    Boof once labelled all the Sri Lankans something much worse than chuckers… don’t forget that.

  8. Hear hear Crio. Murali’s ‘ability’ to throw the ball at international level is a blight on the game. One of many.

    Bishen Bedi describes Muralis wickets as run outs, a truer word has never been spoken. I was too young to recall the chucking controversies of the 50’s and 60’s, but the pandoras box has opened wide the last two decades. The plethora of dubious bowling actions from the sub continent in particular, are an indicement on who runs/how the game is run. Hair had the temerity to challenge the dominant pardaigm of the last 20+ years of international cricket, the control of the game by the nations from the sub continet, and was villfied for it.

    Sure there are cricketers with dubious actions from outside the sub continent., Johan Botha, one of the most concerning, but the ability of Murali to perform at the highest level for the period he did is sad. The wickets he took will sit in the record books for ever, but the words and actions of Darrel Har,and Bishen Bedi, show quality should always surpass quantity.

    Glen !

  9. Sorry Les (and season’s compliments to you), but Murali will always be a blight on the game and, to my mind, a symbol of the ruination blah blah blah!
    Turned the telly over to T20 earlier. Narine throws. Watch his “warm up”. Watch his leggie (you can’t throw a leggie). Wish I could get even money calling his delivery from behind…then watching it’s outcome.
    Where is this heading?
    Why would anyone bowl fair dinkum?

  10. You have to remember that Murali always reckoned that Warne was a better bowler than he was.But what would he know?

  11. Season’s greetings Crio. Murali was a marvel. Still is.

  12. Greg, Murali was more than just correct on that point . Warne bowled. Murali, well Bishen Bedis’ wording is more eloquent than mine.


  13. Murali – a real nice guy who couldn’t help it but he was a chucker. Pure & simple. We all know why it was tolerated. The treatment of Hair was disgraceful.

    On a similar note concerning umpires – have any of you noticed how an umpire in junior cricket who has the temerity to uphold an LBW appeal is immediately viewed as a cheat?

    I know there are dubious decisions but surely not every single LBW decision is a home town decision. I have watched this over the years and continue to be amazed at how every single batsmen who is fired LBW comes off muttering that he hit it or that it was too high or that he was miles down the wicket….etc.

    Last time I looked, LBW was a legal mode of dismissal in cricket.

    Time our junior coaches spent more time teaching their charges to cop it sweet and move on. What goes around comes around, particularly so in cricket.

  14. I love the image of brave Mr Hair standing up to the might of….. Sri Lanka. If he hadn’t been hounded out of the game he would’ve sorted out Kenya too… and Bangladesh.

  15. Les

    No one else was chucking back then so your sarcasm is wasted.

    You’re not bald by any chance as you seem to have an issue with Hair……

  16. Hair would have found a chucker among them.

    By the way Bakes I agree with you about lbw reactions. In the days before referrals I would also marvel at batsmen who mutter all the way back to the pavilion after a dodgy caught behind but happily stand their ground after edging one that the ump missed. Justin Langer’s career was revived by a missed caught behind in Hobart in 1999 but, as Peter Roebuck once remarked, Langer would argue he was not out after being bowled.

  17. Skip of Skipton says

    Langer’s career was revived in 2001, ball one, day one of the first test against NZ at the Gabba; his second test back in the team after replacing Slater in the final Ashes test at the Oval. He was plumb to Chris Cairns but given not out. Onward and upward from that moment on.

    Malinga is a chucker.

  18. G’day Skip. A few people have said that about Malinga.


  19. Plenty of chuckers around, especially in T20 cricket:
    Murali, Botha, Samuels, Narine.

    But Malinga is defintely not one of them. Unusual,
    slinging, round-arm action. But not a chuck.

  20. Good point Smokie. As i mentioned a few people have questioned Malingas’ action, though i disagree with their perspective. To me it is slinging, not throwing. His style is not to dissimilar to Thommos’.

    Murali, Botha, Samuels, Narine; in a fair and balanced world of cricket their arms would be used exclusively in the outfield, not at the bowling crease.


  21. Skip of Skipton says

    Have a look at Malinga in slow-mo if you aren’t convinced. I’m amazed he can do what he does.

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