Ranatunga condemns Taylor

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The Independent Online
Arjuna Ranatunga, the Sri Lanka captain, has accused Mark Taylor of condoning "sledging". Ranatunga was reacting to statements by the Australia captain after the recent West Indies tour, where he accused Ranatunga and Brian Lara of provocation.

"I think he [Lara] is an antagonist - there's no doubt about it. I think he plays it very well, along the lines of a Ranatunga-type player," Taylor said after Lara accused the Australians of "sledging" the West Indies opener Robert Samuels.

Ranatunga responded in a statement by saying that during their last tour in Australia, Sri Lanka were subjected not only to racial abuse but even deliberate physical contact.

The Sri Lankan captain also pointed out that Taylor is the successor to a proud tradition of great Australian captains and cricketers such as Sir Donald Bradman, who have unreservedly condemned sledging.

"Taylor, by condoning such methods, is not only doing great disservice to himself, but to his predecessors as well. My earnest request to him is that he should captain the team as a leader should. Leave those disgusting methods in the gutter, whence only there they can emanate."