Waugh slams ICC’s Howard veto

LONDON, July 2, 2010 (AFP) – Australia great Steve Waugh on Friday blasted the International Cricket Council’s decision to block the bid of former Australia Prime Minister John Howard to become president of the global governing body. For a start, many officials were believed to be unhappy that Howard – who has no track record in cricket administration – was chosen ahead of former New Zealand Cricket chairman John Anderson.

And his vehement opposition, while Australian premier from 1996 to 2007, to the regime of Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe, which included sanctions against its cricket team, may well have counted against him.

So too would have his comment in 2004 that Sri Lanka’s Muttiah Muralitharan was a “chucker”, meaning someone with an illegal bowling action.

In 2006, Howard also strongly supported Australian umpire Darrell Hair, who outraged Pakistan by halting a Test match and awarding victory to England during a protest over ball-tampering allegations. “I think it was a real shame, I think he would have been fantastic for world cricket,” former Australia captain Waugh said at a press conference held by the MCC’s World Cricket Committee at Lord’s here on Friday.

“He has a passion for the game and he is a