Melbourne, Oct 24: While efforts are being made by both Indian and Australian players to keep emotions under control in the current Test series, former Australian stumper Adam Gilchrist questioning Sachin Tendulkar's honesty during the spiteful Sydney Test could open fresh wounds. ( Watch )
In his autobiography, an extract of which will appear in a magazine, Gilchrist has hinted that Tendulkar was a sore loser and questioned his honesty in the "Monkeygate" affair that threatened to go out of hand during India's tour Down Under.
Terming Tendulkar's testimony during Harbhajan Singh's appeal as a "joke", Gilchrist noted, "The Indians got him (Harbhajan) off the hook when they, of all people, should have been treating the matter of racial vilification with the utmost seriousness."
Gilchrist was particularly disappointed with Tendulkar's behaviour who, according to him, had initially told the hearing that he could not hear what was said, he was "certain he was telling the truth" because he was "a fair way away".
But during the appeal which followed, Tendulkar said that Harbhajan used a Hindi term that sounded like "monkey" to Australian ears.
The stumper was convinced that the Harbhajan was guilty and considered India's threat to abandon the tour was "a disgraceful act, holding the game to ransom unless they got their way", ' The Age ' reported.
He also wrote that there was vast difference in the manner the teams approached the game.
"In the Australian mentality, we play it hard and are then quick to shake hands and leave it all on the field. Some of our opponents don't do it that way. Sachin Tendulkar, for instance, can be hard to find for a changing room handshake after we have beaten India. Harbhajan can also be hard to find.
"I guess it's a case of different strokes for different folks."
Gilchrist's comments have not been welcomed by the experts in the cricketing world. Former chairman of selectors Dilip Vengsarkar slammed Gilchrist for his comments against Tendulkar and believes that it is just another way of building curiosity ahead of the release of his book.
He said, "Gilly's comment is a marketing strategy to sell his autobiography."
Meanwhile, India's media manager during the Australian tour -- MV Sridhar, who was present at both the hearings of the name calling incident said that Gilly's comments are uncalled for. He added, "Why do you have to mention words in the middle of the series. This comment is highly uncalled for and I think this is quiet sad that such comments are being made."
Australian Journalist Jon Pierik is of the opinion that Gilly's comment about Tendulkar might inflame tensions between the two sides. He said, "Sachin is regarded as a great man in the cricketing world and since Gilly does not play anymore, not much of an action will be taken. The issue may not be as explosive as its made to be."
Infact one of the witness of the name calling row, Matthew Hayden has said that everyone involved in that incident has moved on and has gone onto praise Harbhajan Singh saying that the off-spinner is a true star in terms of spirit of the game. He said, "I admire Harbhajan Singh and the way he has played in this series. It has been an absolute pleasure to watch him play and has been a great challenge for the batsmen. Everyone has however, moved on from the last summer."