Tuesday, 15 June 2004

It seems that Muttiah Muralitharan isn't going to tour Australia, after all. For those who either don't live in cricketing countries or have been living in a cave (literally or figuratively, from a cricket perspective), Murali is a Sri Lankan off-spinner who was called for chucking a few years ago by Darrell Hair. It was and remains a big controversy, as he has since been "cleared" and re-accused, and recently underwent "scientific tests" that actually determined that his new delivery was thrown instead of bowled.

Its all a bit weird. Anyone who has anything to do with law must be particularly confused, as I am, by the idea the idea that a bowler could have his action "cleared". In a legal sense, this is the equivalent of proving that someone doesn't steal. Not that they didn't steal at a certain moment time, or that they are unable to steal, but that they don't. Its a universally quantified determination of innocence, irrespective of capability. I imagine logicians would be equally bewildered by how this is possible.

To call a spade a shovel, a guy isn't a chucker until he chucks, and can never be "cleared" of chucking. In my opinion, he probably chucks it sometimes, i.e. he partially straightens his arm more than the allowable limit. If the WA scientists say he chucks it in controlled tests, when he knows he's being tested, then chances are he chucks it in a match. This isn't to say he means to, but he probably does anyway.

Furthermore, in the end, if he doesn't want to tour, then let him stay home like a whinger. What he should do is look at the tests and say, "Crikey, perhaps I do chuck it. How do I stop doing that?". Fix it, go back to the scientists and say, "is this better?". If it is, then great, but its still no guarantee that he won't get called again, just like any bowler.

UPDATE: The word I didn't use here but should have is 'sook', but I was beaten to it here and here.

Big girl's blouse.

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