What he said:
"Its all talk, hot air. Wouldn’t want to get stuck in the argument.”
Former England skipper and commentator David Gower is dismissive of Shoaib Akhtar’s remarks concerning Sachin Tendulkar in his autobiography, “Controversially Yours”.
Shoaib had the talent. He was one of the quicks in his generation. He had the pace to trouble the best. Even (Vivian) Richards was troubled by pace. There was nothing new about that. But look at Sachin’s record, his thousands of runs in Test and one-day cricket…Its all hot air, irrelevant!
The left-hander with the sublime skills at the crease was equally critical of Akhtar’s suggestion that ball-tampering be sanctioned:
I understand what they are saying but there has to be a line somewhere. Its like legalising good ivory. It will increase poaching anyway. If you say its okay to do tampering, you will get a lot of tamperers. It will encourage cheating.
What he really meant:
“Shoaib’s blowing hot and then cold on Tendulkar makes this a non-starter. Do we really need to take this topic further?”
What he definitely didn’t:
“I’m a batsman. Do you seriously expect me to take a bowler’s side—on this? I can still recall quaking in my boots when we had the West Indian quartet of fast bowlers at our throats in the 80s. It’s the stuff of nightmares.”