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Delhi police rubbish Flintoff's claim

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September 21, 2005 18:11 IST

The Delhi police has rubbished English fast bowler Andrew Flintoff's claim that he was shot at during the One-Day International between India and England at Delhi's Ferozshah Kotla in 2002.

"Well, what can we say about the claim of Andrew Flintoff? What was he doing for almost four years? What happened to his colleagues? Why didn't they report the matter to the police," asked a top Delhi police official.

Flintoff, in his autobiography, revealed he was shot at during a One-Day International against India in Delhi in 2002, but the incident was swept under the carpet.

'I felt something hit me and, looking down, saw pellets on the ground,' Flintoff wrote in his book 'Being Freddie', extracts of which were published in The Times, London, on Wednesday.

"This is nothing more than a selling gimmick," said another official. "Someone must have advised him that if he wants to sell his book he should put some ammunition in it. And he took it literally and thought of kicking up a row by claiming that he was fired upon in the Delhi match," laughed the officer.

Delhi and District Cricket Association officials were taken aback by the ridiculous claim of the all-rounder.

"We have the tightest security during One-Day International matches, particularly in the capital, and everyone is allowed in only after screening. There is no question of someone sneaking in with a gun. If he was fired upon then why did he choose not to speak for so long. He knows that three years after the incident it would be difficult to find out anything. The mud has been changed and the ground has been laid afresh," said former India opening batsman Chetan Chauhan, now a DDCA official.

"This incident is the brainchild of his fertile mind. Maybe, someone threw a bottle cock and he thought that it was a pellet. Former Deputy Prime Minister L K Advani and Congress president Sonia Gandhi too were present at the match. I was personally in charge of the players' gallery. Flintoff never complained to me or anyone," he added.

He demanded that Government of India and BCCI take up the matter with the English Cricket Board.

Onkar Singh in Delhi