Melbourne:Bloggers have zeroed in on Michael Clarke as the main culprit behind the suspension of Andrew Symonds.
According to a report in The Age, hundreds of bloggers demanded an explanation from Clarke and also described him as a Cricket Australia (CA) clone and ruthlessly ambitious leader-in-the-wings.
Clarke came under fire after it was revealed that the 27-year-old was one of four men who decided Symonds's suspension from the series against Bangladesh after he chose a fishing expedition over team meeting. Ricky Ponting, coach Tim Nielsen and team manager Steve Bernard were the others.
But fans laid the blame squarely on Clarke, arguing he was looking to stamp his authority on the side in Ponting's absence, in his first series in charge.
But amidst all the criticism, CA and teammates came in rescue of Clarke.
"That's not true, this was a decision made by four people and the first thing Michael did was to seek the advice of Ricky," CA's general manager of operations, Michael Brown was quoted as saying by the daily.
Michael Hussey, who was overlooked for skipper duties, praised Clarke for making the big call at the risk of sacrificing his friendship with Symonds, which remains uncertain.
"It was very hard for him, he and Andrew are very good friends," Hussey said. "But he seems to have handled it very well, he is the same person and hasn't got himself down about it. In a leadership position you will be required to make those tough calls, and he has done so."