Chandigarh: Showering praise on retired Sri Lankan spin wizard Muttiah Muralitharan, former Australian captain Steve Waugh said there was no racist angle involved in chucking allegations which the bowler had faced earlier.
Muralitharan brought down the curtains on his glittering 18-year-old Test career after reaching 800-wicket mark in his swansong Test against India last week.
"Murali is a great player who has created an unbeatable and amazing record of 800 Test wickets. We admire the skills he has brought to the game. Some people had some things to say, but at the end of the day, he is a different element, who has on 67 occasions taken 5 wickets in a game," Waugh told reporters here on the sidelines of a function.=
When asked that it was the Australian umpires who had called him for throwing after which chucking allegations were levelled against the great player who had to even face jibes Down Under and if all these had been racially motivated, Waugh said, "forget racial thing, that card always gets played".
"It was certainly not a racist thing. We should celebrate that he (Murali) has played so successfully," he said.
Waugh said there were consequences to the decision of the umpires, which was a big decision which they had taken and one could always debate about that.
The spinner`s action had come under scanner when Australian umpire Darrell Hair called him for throwing during the Sri Lanka`s tour to Australia in 1995-96. Former Aussie umpire Ross Emerson had on one occasion no-balled him seven times during a ODI.