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March 3, 2008
Harbhajan Singh, who was alleged to have gestured and spat at a section of the Sydney crowd yesterday, will not be in the dock after match referee Jeff Crowe viewed all the evidence on the incident, and subsequently felt there was no need for action against him.
"I have investigated the alleged incident with Cricket Australia's ground security officials after reading newspaper reports and viewing related photographs that have been published. After reviewing all available information, I conclude that there is no need to take any action against Harbhajan Singh," Crowe said in a press statement.
Earlier, India had rejected the accusations against the spinner Harbhajan, following reports of the incident in the first final of the CB Series in Sydney. Indian officials felt it was a further attempt to unsettle Harbhajan.
"This is the imagination of the Australian press, which has been trying to add pressure on Harbhajan at every moment," Bimal Soni, the India team manager, said. India want to keep the focus on the on-field action ahead of the second CB Series final in Brisbane after they won the first decider at the SCG on Sunday.
The Sydney Morning Herald and the Daily Telegraph both quoted members of the crowd who claimed Harbhajan had made monkey gestures towards them and spat in their direction. The papers also said Harbhajan was being abused by spectators.
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