West Indies news February 26, 2016

Narine claims he was mocked by Trinidad official for 'pelting'


Sunil Narine was suspended after being reported by the umpires for throwing during West Indies' tour of Sri Lanka © AFP

West Indies offspinner Sunil Narine has written to the National League Representatives (NLR) asking for an independent probe into whether an email that mocked him for "pelting" was sent by Trinidad & Tobago Cricket Board (TTCB) president Azim Bassarath.

Narine, who was banned from bowling in international cricket on November 29, had undergone biometric testing at Loughborough University after being reported for a suspect action during the third ODI of West Indies' tour of Sri Lanka earlier that month.

In his letter to the six-member NLR, a copy of which has been seen by ESPNcricinfo, Narine claimed that Bassarath's email had been sent on the very same day as his ban to various TTCB officials, including executive member Baldath Mahabir.

"If indeed the letter came from Mr Bassarath and I have to stress the 'if' right now, it seems that he must have long believed that my bowling action was illegal," Narine wrote.

"There was such venom and almost joy in my being suspended that was evident in the email which said, "Let him start to Bowl !!!!!! He was not turning much in d first place!!!!! Straight ball and faster one all the time. !!!! PELTING !!!!!!!"

But in a TTCB media release sent this week Bassarath strongly denied he had sent the alleged email. Bassarath also stressed that he would take legal recourse if the email was attributed to his name in the local media.

In the immediate aftermath of his suspension, Narine claimed to have received a sympathetic email from TTCB chief executive Sooraj Ragoonath, a copy of which was sent to Bassarath, extending the board's support to the offspinner and, soon afterwards, inviting Narine to play in the Nagico Super 50, the regional ODI tournament in which he had been the leading wicket-taker last year.

However on December 18, Ragoonath wrote back, saying the WICB would not allow "any person who is debarred by the ICC" to participate in regional tournaments until cleared and that the TTCB had withdrawn Narine from the one-day squad. Narine was subsequently barred from entering the T&T players' enclosure by the ground security at Queen's Park Oval.

"It was a time of extreme stress for me and I was grateful when I received an email from Suruj Ragoonath, the CEO of the Trinidad & Tobago Cricket Board, which contained the promise to provide me 'with all the necessary support' and invited me to a meeting to discuss how the TTCB could assist me and to get an idea of the support I would require," Narine wrote.

Instead, Narine said that he was taken totally aback on learning that the TTCB was contemplating banning him from bowling in club cricket in T&T. At a TTCB meeting chaired by Bassarath, Narine said, "An attempt was made to change the rules of the national tournament to prevent players suspended by the ICC from participating at the national level."

Responding to Narine's allegation, Bassarath, through a TTCB release titled 'Email link denied', issued by the board's media manager, stated, "Mr Bassarath wishes to totally disassociate himself from the alleged email currently making the rounds and which is being pronounced upon to suggest that it is authentic.

"The president of the TTCB reserves the right to seek legal recourse to clear his name should the alleged email be attributed to him in reports carried in the local media," the release read.

Narine concluded, "Even though I seem to have been denied natural justice by the writer of the email which accused me of "pelting", I believe that an independent investigation should be undertaken to determine, if it was not Mr Bassarath himself, who indeed was the person who sent the Emails using Mr Bassarath's known and familiar email address as well as Mr Baldath Mahabir."

The NLR comprises six members elected by the local T&T clubs, and they sit on the TTCB. The members of the NLR are: Dinanath Ramnarine, Daren Ganga, Giles Antoine, Andre Lawrence, Anil Kamal and Clint Pamphille.

Nagraj Gollapudi is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Roland on March 1, 2016, 16:39 GMT

    One rule for some and another rule for others. The biggest pelters in cricket were always from the WI - Ambrose and Walsh were the main offenders and used their chuck to gain pace that could harm batsmen.

  • Viren on March 1, 2016, 6:05 GMT

    This whole issue of throwing and bowling is hugely sensationalized. The intention is to deliver a ball over 22 yards which should pitch appropriately and allow the batsman the opportunity of a stroke. If the ball is thrown, pelted or bowled, what is the damn difference???????????????? The rules should be changed to allow all of the above............... The batsman is not restricted as to how he holds the bat or plays his shots so why should the bowler be restricted in executing his skill??????? This whole issue is killing the game. Ajmal and Narine are two legends who are suffering because of this nonsense..........

  • Mark on March 1, 2016, 2:48 GMT

    Feel so sorry for Narine. Watched the T20 world cup with about 20 WI fans and we were laughing and joking at Narine (and Samuels) pelting almost every ball (naughty but true - blame the beer). Surely Narine would have stood a good chance of modifying his action if he had been made aware and helped years ago. I hope it's not too late for him to adapt. However, the ICC must be more effective in ensuring that bowlers who throw do not get as far test cricket.

  • knianr3126727 on February 29, 2016, 17:03 GMT

    [[[[[[[[[[[[ Agreed @dannyburke, these guys took the place of legitimate bowlers in their respective teams and made millions. That's money they were never entitled to. No sympathy for that. TheWatcher

    @Sammy, its not sad at all. Personally I think its great. People should want people who abide by the, already modified and lenient, rules, DannyBurke ]]]]]]]]

    [[[[[[Neither Narine or Murali or Botha or the South African fella, throws]]]]]

    The MYSTERY is why did it become an issue? REASON: Some international batsmen were not able to play 'real spin' bowling, and were being exposed as flawed; they simply are not world-class batsmen. So in order to take the attention away from there weaknesses they started SCREAMING like the inept bitches, battyboys, pantymen that they are. They simply CANNOT BAT; they are not bona fide batsmen. They need to stop playing cricket, and allow real bowlers to bowl.

    As for the rule: a 15 degree limitation of flex of the elbow is difficult to determine

  • Raj on February 29, 2016, 15:34 GMT

    Why the sensational headline? According to what's written above, Sunil Narine did not claim he was mocked by the Trinidad official for pelting - note his emphasis: "and I have to stress the 'if' right now". A more accurate headline would have been "Sunil Narine investigates if he was mocked by the Trinidad official for pelting". But this headline would not attract readers; even though it is the more professionally responsible thing to do. I hope the author reads our comments. Please publish. Thanks.

  • Sab on February 28, 2016, 8:37 GMT

    Agreed @dannyburke, these guys took the place of legitimate bowlers in their respective teams and made millions. That's money they were never entitled to. No sympathy for that.

  • Cricinfouser on February 28, 2016, 3:28 GMT

    I. C. C is the governing body of world cricket. Under that body comes. W. I. C. B and then T. T C. B ...... . I. C. C umpires called him. The " bowler " is not contracted to neither one. of the Boards exception. I. P. L. So why don't They support him? Remember when the same. Trinidad team needed him for the C. T20 for the last chance to win as a team what hé chose to do?

  • Daniel on February 28, 2016, 2:25 GMT

    @Sammy, its not sad at all. Personally I think its great. People should want people who abide by the, already modified and lenient, rules,

  • Saj on February 28, 2016, 2:18 GMT

    Can someone publish diagrammatically what the angles are and how much Narine deviates from these approved angles at least in two dimensions. I read words like chucking, pelting and they are not clear to me, as I see many fast bowlers "chucking" the ball and they are not called. It is difficult to figure out how an umpire can call him without having the geometric tools to determine the angles that Narine or any other spinner is bowling. Is the third umpire equipped with these tools as well. Can someone with the technical knowledge guide me here.

  • Sammy K on February 27, 2016, 19:25 GMT

    This has to be heartbreaking for Sunil. He and Ajmal were such a treat to watch and both are gone now. Sad day for lovers of spin bowling. Unless the ICC allows a change in the rules, these two are history. Its impossible to make a comeback at the elite level with a modified action. Thanks for the memories guys.

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