Mumbai: India's discarded off-spinner Harbhajan Singh has come down heavily on former ICC umpire Darrell Hair, who has sarcastically picked out three Asian spinners-Saqlain Mushtaq (Pakistan), Harbhajan Singh (India) and Muthiah Muralitharan (Sri Lanka)- as 'role models' for 'chuckers'.
"This is too much. We didn't cross the limit but now Hair is "crossing the limit". “Unka dimag theekane nahi (He seems to have gone mad)", the 35-year-old off-spinner said over telephone.
"We were always within the permissible limit. Me and Muralitharan were cleared by the ICC more than once and why didn't Hair object to my bowling thereafter? Was it because he was feared of losing his job as an ICC umpire? We are not sons-in-law of the ICC," Harbhajan added.
Harbhajan was tested and cleared twice in 1999 in England and in 2005 in Perth, Australia.
"The present day bowlers are trying to bowl doosra, which was invented by us. It doesn't necessarily mean they are bending arms more than the limit. The doosras can be bowled without bending the arms too much," said Harbhajan.
"The ICC has set a standard for his bowlers and using the latest technology. Hair should stop challenging the technology and better keep his mouth shut."
There was a rumour in Australia that Hair may be assigned the advisory role before the next year's World Cup. However, it is to be seen whether the ICC shows that bold step for the umpire who handed over his resignation after fall out with the highest governing body of the game....