Team India hits back at Harper`s allegations

Last Updated: Jul 17, 2011, 14:49 PM IST

Somerset: Team India has described retired international umpire Daryl Harper`s charge that captain M S Dhoni tried to intimidate him, as unwarranted.

Team sources said on Sunday that they are surprised by Harper`s comments.

According to a news channel, some players even laughed off comments made by Harper.

Meanwhile, Dhoni has received the backing of cricket experts, especially considering Harper`s record of getting into trouble with a number of International cricketers.

Saying, ``Harper has had run ins with players a number of times``, cricket experts said they prefer to believe India`s side of the story rather than Harper`s.

Harper called time on his international umpiring career during the West Indies series when a number of the decisions of the Australian were questioned by the Indian team and experts.

Harper, who was forced to withdraw from the third Test following criticisms from Indian players, said Dhoni should have been penalised for his comments on poor umpiring, adding that he was forced to break his silence following ICC`s inaction.

Harper said Dhoni tried to intimidate him after paceman Praveen Kumar was removed from the attack for repeatedly running on the pitch.

According to a website, Harper said that Dhoni approached him and said "we`ve had problems with you before, Daryl", which the umpire interpreted as an attempt to intimidate.

"I decided what he meant was that I was one umpire not influenced by any personalities or teams or boards. He hadn`t been able to intimidate me, I think that was part of it," Harper said.

Harper also said that Dhoni should have been punished for his comments at the post-match conference.