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  Tuesday, 27 November, 2001, 17:23 GMT
Captains demand change
Shaun Pollock and Rahul Dravid
Pollock and Dravid discuss the unofficial third Test
South Africa captain Shaun Pollock has called for clearer guidelines for on-field offences following his side's triumph in the unofficial third Test against India.

While delighted with his team's series victory following their innings and 73-run win at Centurion Park, Pollock also aired his concerns over the controversy surrounding Mike Denness' removal as match referee.

Denness imposed penalties on six Indian players in the drawn second Test and the South African cricket board, under pressure from India, subsequently banned him from officiating at the third Test.


The ICC can maybe learn from this
Shaun Pollock
The International Cricket Council (ICC) responded by stripping the match of its Test status.

"The best thing that can happen, whether it be excessive appealing or whatever, is that there should be a prescribed punishment for each offence," Pollock said.

"Then it's not left up to each match referee to make his own assessment. If someone appeals excessively it needs to be written down what the punishment will be.

"Then everyone will accept it because they know what the consequences are before it happens."

"The ICC can maybe learn from this that everything should be set in place so that if anything does happen you have a code of conduct to deal with the situation."

Valuable competition

Nevertheless, the win was a useful fillip ahead of South Africa's three-Test series against Australia over Christmas and the New Year period, the first starting in Adelaide on 14 December.

South Africa had already won the first Test at Bloemfontein by nine wickets with the second at Port Elizabeth drawn.

"I think the guys have played very good cricket throughout the season so far and it's good preparation ahead of our trip to Australia," he added.

"Obviously it wasn't a Test, we all knew that at the start but the guys got into the spirit of it and they played it at a very competitive level.

"There was a real buzz out there and a real anticipation that there were going to be wickets, it's positive and it's good looking forward to the next series.

"We are confident. I believe we have the team to win against anyone in the world, obviously the way we have played in this series has given us confidence which we will take into the next series."

Improvement

Meanwhile India's stand-in captain Rahul Dravid wants his side to show a vast improvement on their capitulation against South Africa when they take on England in the forthcoming home series.

Shaun Pollock
Pollock wants to see prescribed punishments
Their build up to the first of three Tests against Nasser Hussain's team, which is due to start in Mohali on 3 December, ended with the South African pacemen ripping through the order, reducing the tourists from an overnight 118 for two to 261 all out shortly after lunch on the final day of the match.

The defeat was hastened by the retirement of Venkatash Prasad, who had a stiff neck and Javagal Srinath, who broke a finger while batting in the first innings. Neither is expected to feature against England.

Dravid, who will be relieved of the captaincy when the injured Sourav Ganguly returns for the Mohali Test, admitted his side had been second best to South Africa.

But it was not all doom and gloom for India, despite winning just two games on tour.

"Virender Sehwag had a very good Test match at Bloemfontein and Deep Dasgupta showed a lot of character right through the series," Dravid said.

"So there have been some positives and we have a long season ahead so hopefully the guys can keep going.

"It's a different environment [against England], we'll have a lot of crowd support and everybody rooting for us.

"We'll hopefully go out there and put a better show than we did in this series."

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