England’s coach Trevor Bayliss has brushed off all the allegations on his team for ball tampering as the umpires in the fourth Ashes test with Australia spoke to both teams about their treatment of the new ball.
A Cricket Australia spokesman confirmed on Friday that both teams had been spoken to about their practice of throwing the ball into the ground. But there was no suggestion the teams had broken any rules so no action would be taken by the match referee Ranjan Madugalle.
Talking about the issue, Bayliss said, “It’s a beat-up. As soon as I saw the headlines I raced into the umpires and that was their words. Nothing to worry about, it was a beat-up, absolutely fine. The umpires spoke to both teams about throwing the ball into the rough areas but every team in the world does it.”
It became a huge matter at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Friday after the umpires, Sundaram Ravi and Kumar Dharmasena, spoke to England skipper Joe Root and pacer Jimmy Anderson, and Australian television repeatedly showed footage of Anderson cleaning the seam on the ball.
Ball tampering is not allowed in cricket and Bayliss said, “I went to the umpires and there is no problem from their point of view. You are allowed to clean the ball and they don’t see any problem whatsoever.”
He further added, “I spoke to Kumar Dharmasena and he said to me that with a bit of rain out there, there was some mud on the ball and you are allowed to clean the ball. He said that is fine, just do it in front of me which he (Anderson) was.”
Australian all-rounder Mitchell Marsh also said neither team had done anything wrong. He said, “I don’t really think teams have been throwing the ball into the pitch inappropriately.”