Glenn McGrath and Brad Hodge have joined the Australian backlash over Sunil Gavaskar's linking of David Hookes' death to poor on-field behaviour. McGrath said Gavaskar "crossed the line" while Hodge was "pretty disappointed" his former coach, who died in 2004, had been brought into the argument.
Gavaskar warned the Australians could get "whacked" in a bar if they operated the same way off the field as they did on it and his comments followed Ricky Ponting's complaint Gavaskar acted badly during his playing days. Allan Border and Darren Lehmann were also upset by Gavaskar's response.
"Fair enough, if that's what [Gavaskar] thinks, he's allowed to comment on the team," McGrath said on Sydney's 2KY. "But I think when you start bringing David Hookes into it that's crossing the line. It's very disrespectful. Sunny was an amazing cricketer, but I think this time he's gone beyond."
McGrath agreed Gavaskar's words could damage Australian cricket's relationship with the ICC official. "I think potentially it could be, we'll wait and see," McGrath said. "The comments in themselves are very disappointing when he's mentioning David Hookes and you really feel for Hookesy's family."
McGrath said Gavaskar must feet Australia were a threat to India and "he's trying to put us off our game". He also said the current side's behaviour was not "any worse than any other teams". "It's fine to say that we are, but at the end of the day I think the Indian team does it as well as every other team," he said.
Hodge made a brief statement at the team hotel in St Kitts. "I'm disappointed about comments made about my former coach David Hookes," Hodge told AAP. "That's all I'm going to say about it."