Jake Lehmann (centre) of the Strikers is congratulated after taking the wicket of Shane Watson of the Thunder
Jake Lehmann (centre) of the Strikers is congratulated after taking the wicket of Shane Watson of the Thunder PAUL MILLER

Did Channel 10 Big Bash commentary cross the line?

CRICKET: It was not a great look for the Big Bash League when Channel 10 commentator Mark Howard told Adelaide skipper Brad Hodge during the live broadcast his bowler Ben Laughlin had a decent recent record against Shane Watson.

Upon hearing the statistics Watson had fallen twice to Laughlin in the space of eight balls, Hodge injected him into the bowling attack the very next over.

As more than 1 million TV viewers watched on - and millions of dollars were being invested locally and abroad on the live betting markets - Howard told Hodge: "Our master statistician Lawrie Colliver tells us Laughlin has got Watson twice in the last eight balls he's bowled him in this competition.

"Really?'' Hodge says.

"I'll leave that with you skipper,'' Howard said.

Hodge laughed and said: "I'll bring him on next over then. Let's get him into the game. Next over bud.''

Watson tonked Laughlin for a boundary with his second ball and did not look troubled.

Watson was probably already aware of Laughlin's record against him.

He had no comment to make afterwards.

"That's what happens, there are always match-ups, some guys have success against you, some guys don't,'' Watson said.

Thunder boss Nick Cummins later said Laughlin would have also known about his recent efforts against the powerhouse right-hander.

But the timing and nature of the conversation was not ideal, especially given cricket officials have had their concerns in the past about information being abused by punters betting legally and illegally around the globe.


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