'Symonds broke pact with Harbhajan'
Indian team manager Chetan Chauhan says it was Symonds who started the racism row by provoking Harbhajan.Updated: Jan 10, 2008 13:53 IST
It was Australian all-rounder Andrew Symonds who started the racism row in Sydney by provoking Harbhajan Singh during the ill-tempered second Test, Indian team manager Chetan Chauhan said on Thursday.
The former Test opener revealed that Symonds broke an agreement between the two players, which was reached in Mumbai during last year's one-day series, and said it was the Australian who was responsible for the controversy.
"They had a pact in Mumbai after incidents during that series and the person who started the row was the one who broke the pact by reporting the incident," Chauhan said.
The Indian team manager suggested that Symonds was not totally innocent in the whole controversy.
"He has admitted that he had said something to provoke Harbhajan. So there was a cause and an effect," he said.
"We tried our best to scale down the controversy but were told that the Australian players were adamant to press charges."
The Indians have lodged an appeal against the three-Test ban slapped on Harbhajan by ICC Match Referee Mike Procter and Chauhan was reluctant to say more on the matter which was now sub-judice.