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India drop charges against Brad Hogg

A source tells HT that Cricket Australia president Creagh O’ Connor is keen that his players reciprocate, reports Atreyo Mukhopadhyay.

cricket Updated: Jan 15, 2008 04:50 IST
Atreyo Mukhopadhyay

Anil Kumble and Ricky Ponting had a peace meeting on Monday ahead of the third Test. The two skippers were brought together for a short while by ICC’s chief match referee Ranjan Madugalle, the man roped in to mediate between them after the ill-tempered Sydney Test.

While the exact words exchanged were not known, what is known is that both shook hands and called a truce, following which, the Indian skipper informed match referee Mike Procter that India were withdrawing their charge against Brad Hogg as a "goodwill gesture".

<b1>While some interpreted this as a hope that this will have the Aussies lay off Harbhajan Singh during the appeal hearing (expected on January 29 and 30 in Adelaide, after the fourth Test), the Indians said that was not true. "It didn’t make sense our continuing to press charges and saying Hogg meant to be offensive by calling us bastards one hour after making peace with the Australians," said a team member.

At this point, the Indians do not know if the Aussies will withdraw the racism charge, but they say they are looking at that as an independent battle. "We know that is a different case, as there’s already been a decision, which is in appeal, so on the face of it, it’s now out of the Australian team’s hands. But if the intent is there, and they decided to return the goodwill gesture, these things can be done."

A source told HT that Cricket Australia president Creagh O’ Connor, in Dubai for an ICC meeting, was keen that his players reciprocate. "He is in favour of this but he needs to bring his players on board, the decision will be theirs," said a source.