The criticism on bad behavior of the players of the 1980s team by Brian Lara has not gone well with Michael Holding.
While delivering the MCC Spirit of Cricket Cowdrey lecture at Lord’s earlier this week, Lara hinted at several unsporting instances including Holding kicking the stumps and Colin Croft shouldering the match umpire against New Zealand during the 1980 tour.
Fred Goodall, one of the two umpires, who officiated in the series and was shoulder-barged (by Colin Croft) believes that the captain could have avoided the situation.
Speaking exclusively over telephone from his Wellington home, the 80-year-old Goodall said, “it was a difficult situation at the time during the 1st and 2nd Tests. The West Indies players accused my colleague and myself of being cheats and challenged every decision. I was disappointed the captain (Clive Llyod) didn’t take more control”.
“It was Michael Holding who kicked stumps in Dunedin at a protest of decision of the other umpire John Hastie”.
“There were lots of lbws but ball was keeping low. There were probably a lot turned down too! I had half a season umpiring in English county cricket in 1978 as part of a Commonwealth scholarship. Also remember umpires were volunteers back then and had regular (other) full time jobs”, he added..
Goodall denies being racist in his remarks at the dinner.
“I definitely wasn’t racist. Some remarks I made at an after dinner speech were recorded without my knowledge and taken out of context. I really don’t want all this brought up”.
The Windies Cricket Board is believed to have had sent an apology letter to the New Zealand Cricket board then. “I don’t remember what was in this apology letter”.
“I believe the West Indies have had some fantastic players and I had a lot of admiration for them as a cricketing nation.I have no ill feelings toward them. It all should be left in the past and I prefer for it all not to be brought up again and again”, Goodall signed off.