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Last Updated: Tuesday, 15 January 2008, 10:37 GMT
Test rivals scrap catch agreement
Ricky Ponting indicates to Sourav Ganguly he is out
Ponting was at the centre of a controversial catch in Sydney
Australia and India have abandoned their agreement of trusting the word of fielders on disputed low catches.

Both teams had agreed to trust the fielder's integrity rather than refer the decision to the third umpire at the start of the four-Test series.

But the accord was discarded after the controversial Sydney Test, which was blighted by contentious catches.

India captain Anil Kumble said: "I think it's best left to the judgement of the umpires and the match referee."

An angry Kumble had declared that "only one team was playing within the spirit of the game" at a press conference after Australia had won their 16th successive Test.

They will break their own record for consecutive Test wins should they overcome India at the Waca.


The Sydney Test saw a series of poor umpiring decisions and over-zealous appealing. Hours after it finished, Harbhajan Singh was banned for three matches for an alleged racist remark against Andrew Symonds.

India's hopes of salvaging a draw on a dramatic fifth day at the SCG effectively ended when Sourav Ganguly was controversially caught at second slip by Michael Clarke for 51.

Replays suggested the catch had not been taken cleanly but Ganguly stood his ground, a decision which incensed Australia captain Ricky Ponting, who put his finger up to indicate the catch was legitimate.

Ponting said he wanted to keep the agreement in place, but agreed to cancel it at Kumble's insistence at a pre-match meeting to assuage the team's differences after the fallout in Sydney.

Billy Bowden and Anil Kumble have a discussion in Perth
Billy Bowden (left) has the full backing of Anil Kumble

"The feeling through the Indian team, and probably just not necessarily Anil's thoughts on it, were that they would like it to go back and be in the hands of the umpire," said Ponting.

"I've just had a chat with both umpires about the whole thing and they'll be endeavouring to make the call between themselves on the field rather than just referring everything, which is the way I prefer it to be."

Umpires Billy Bowden - who replaces Steve Bucknor after India's complaints about his performance in Sydney - and Asad Rauf will take charge at the Waca.

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