It's a book called True Colours but the Indian cricketing fraternity is likely to dub it a pack of lies. Adam Gilchrist, Australia's vice-captain during the turbulent events of Sydney early this year, has apparently done the unforgivable.
<b1>According to a report in the Sydney Morning Herald, he has accused Indian icon Sachin Tendulkar of being a “bad sport” and implied that he lied to protect Harbhajan Singh during the Monkeygate scandal.
“Tendulkar, who'd said at the first hearing that he hadn't been able to hear what Harbhajan had said — and he was a fair way away, up the other end, so I'm certain he was telling the truth — now supported Harbhajan's version that he hadn't called Symo a 'monkey' but instead a Hindi term of abuse that might sound like 'monkey' to Australian ears,” Gilchrist has written. “The Indians got him off the hook when they, of all people, should have been treating the matter of racial vilification with the utmost seriousness.”
SMH also reports that Gilchrist was upset by the final moments of the SCG Test when the celebrating Australians did not shake hands with the waiting Anil Kumble and young Ishant Sharma.
Gilchrist has written: “We went into the Indian changing room and shook hands. Not all their players could be found, which points to another subtle cultural difference.
“In the Australian mentality, we play it hard and are then quick to shake hands and leave it all on the field. Some of our opponents don't do it that way. Sachin Tendulkar, for instance, can be hard to find for a changing room handshake after we have beaten India. Harbhajan can also be hard to find.”
“I guess it's a case of different strokes for different folks. But the criticism of us for not immediately shaking hands with Kumble and Sharma was unfair, and typified a moment when everything we did was wrong,” he wrote in his book.
Gilchrist, who slammed the BCCI for "holding the world to ransom" and both boards for mishandling the issue, would not find many takers for this version of events, given that the dramatic events of that final day of the second Test in Sydney were watched and widely reported.
Anyone who saw the Sydney Test would remember the way the Australians celebrated at the end of a viciously fought match, and the sight of a dignified Kumble having an arm around young Ishant on the back as they waited in vain for the Australian team to greet them, before walking away.
Finally, the timing of the serialisation of the to-be-released book, bang in the middle of a high-voltage India-Australia series, is worth noting. Tensions can only increase.