Cricket Round-up: Ball-tampering mystery

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The Independent Online
AUTHORITIES at Lord's and The Oval yesterday tried to pour cold water on the latest ball-tampering allegations.

The former umpire, Don Oslear, has claimed that Surrey, already on probation, were involved in two more ball-doctoring incidents last summer. But Test and County Cricket Board officials said: 'There were no reported cases in 1993, nor any so far in 1994.'

According to Oslear, Surrey's Championship matches against Northamptonshire and Derbyshire last season added further chapters to the game's saga.

Oslear, no longer on the first-class umpires' panel, was standing in that second match at Ilkeston. He says he decided not to report Surrey to Lord's even though 'I'd found scratches on the ball' and Waqar Younis, the county's Pakistani fast bowler, had 'confessed' to tampering.

Oslear was lenient because 'I could see Monte Lynch (Surrey's acting captain) having to carry the can, remembering how the Surrey committee had warned their skipper Alec Stewart and his team of heavy punishments if the county got into trouble again.'

The West Indies Cricket Board said yesterday it would oppose retaining the experimental law limiting fast bowlers to one bouncer an over at the next International Cricket Council meeting this year.