Dr Barclay Reid, “Buddy Reid” in most minds, has this week related his role in medically examining Muralitharan’s peculiar physiognomy and clarifying the process of mystification that led some Australian umpires to no-ball him in late 1995 as part of a process — as they thought — of cleansing the cricket field of “throwers” (see https://thuppahis.com/2022/12/21/muralitharan-the-arm-that-did-not-chuck/).
Jacqueline Alderson of UWA’s Technology team preparing Murali for a test as part of Foster’s team …
Muralitharan survived the initial assault** and continued to bemuse batsmen. He then upped the ante,” so to speak, by inventing the “doosra” delivery at the dawn of the twenty-first century.
This generated fresh assaults on him as a “chucker.” It was at this point of time in 2002-03 or so that friends of Sri Lankan cricket moved to Murali’s defence. The tale of five “backroom boffins” and lovers of cricket who stepped forward and combined to save Murali at this point of time has been related by me in an article published in my cricket web-site in May 2017: viz., https://cricketique.live/2017/05/01/five-brave-men-who-saved-muralis-doosra/ …. an essay that is a summary of an extended article covering the totality of threats to Murali in my book Incursions & Excursions in and Around Sri Lankan Cricket (Colombo, Vijitha Yapa Publications 2011.…ISBN 978-955-53198-0-5).
…. so here, then, I present these five individuals …. full frontal because they were (are) thinking men ready to fight for justice in the face of powerful forces in the cricket world.
ADDITIONAL NOTE by Michael Roberts, 23 December 2022
Though there were some continuities in prejudice and source of animus, there were three different stages in the assaults on Murali’s skills: (A) December 1995–February 1996; (B) January 1999 beginning with the no-balling of emerson at Adelaide; and (C) after Muralitharan unveilled and wielded the “doosra” so effectively from circa 2001.
This article above is about the steps taken during the claims of chucking at Stage III. Ravi Goonetilleke’s useful intervention was in January-Februaary 1996 and was a factor of some inportance (albeit not necessarily decisive during STAGE ONE).
I was aware of his work in Hong Kong via information supplied by one his aides named “Dagobert” and have referred to this set of measures in my article “Saving Murali: Action On-field and Off-Field, 1995-2005,” which has been presented in Roberts, Incursions & Excursions in and around Sri Lankan Cricket, Colombo, Yapa Publications, 20110, pp. 111-39 …. a book which even presents Dr Ravi Goonetilleke’s graphic chart of Murali’s arm-action (as Fig 23a).
Whatever the medical merits of this work, I speculate that Dr Gooneilleke’s identity as a Sri Lankan was probably a disadvantage in the corridors of Australian and ICC power; and that the work done by Foster, Bruce Elliott and the UWA team may have exercised a greatear impact in 1996 …. though never to the extent of dissuading the adamantine chucker-believers in high-placed Australian and ICC circles — a force that re-emerged in early 1998 and continued to remain as a thread in vocal cricket quarters.
“Dickie Bird” — see his caustic comment of yesterday — needs to re-examine his reasoning (and let me stress that I am not going to participate in any slanging match).