BCCI continues to defend Chappell
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BCCI continues to defend Chappell

A Kolkata daily, however, quoted Greg admitting to making finger gesture and terming the crowd behaviour "bizzare".

india Updated: Nov 27, 2005 18:49 IST

Greg Chappell, in the midst of a raging 'finger' controversy, continued to enjoy the support of BCCI which desperately sought to cap the unsavoury episode by categorically stating here on Sunday that there had been no such incident at all.

A newspaper from Kolkata, however, quoted Chappell admitting to making the finger gesture. "Yes, I did," Chappell reportedly told the daily. When asked if the gesture was aimed at the crowd, he said: "I do not think I need to specify the reason to you." Chappell reportedly also said the footage, first captured by a local production house of a sports capsule and later sold to mainline news channels, was not doctored. He termed the behaviour of the Kolkata crowd as "bizzare".

Flooded with queries on the alleged incident, Indian team media manager M Baladitya reiterated that the Aussie was just tending to an injured finger.

"All the team members and coach Greg Chappell have enormous respect for the Indian fans and I am repeating what I said to the media in Kolkata that there was no such incident or any attempt by the coach," Baditya told a press conference on the eve of the fifth and final One-Dayer against South Africa.

"He had injured his finger while giving fielding practice to the team members and was only attending to it in the team bus," Baladitya said.

"This should be the end of the matter on this issue," he added.

Chappell's raised finger, caught in a video grab by a local Kolkata TV channel, has raised a furore although it is still not clear whether the coach actually made the gesture.

The footage shows Chappell, who had just boarded the team bus, making a gesture with his finger towards cricket fans, apparently in response to jeers from them after the Indian team's practice session on the eve of the fourth one-dayer in Kolkata.

First Published: Nov 27, 2005 11:14 IST