Ian Bell: James Anderson row has been 'blown out of proportion'

Ravindra Jadeja (left) and James Anderson
Both Anderson and Jadeja were found not guilty of breaching the ICC code of conduct last week
England v India: Fourth Test
Dates: 7-11 August
Coverage: Live commentary on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra and Radio 4 LW from 10:25 BST, text commentary on BBC website

England's Ian Bell says the row over James Anderson's alleged aggressive conduct "got blown out of proportion".

India have expressed their discontent that Anderson was cleared by the International Cricket Council (ICC) over a fracas with Ravindra Jadeja.

ICC chief executive David Richardson is now considering whether to appeal the verdict of commissioner Gordon Lewis.

But Bell says the ongoing furore does not befit a series that "has been played in a good spirit".

"Apart from one incident there's been nothing on the field at all, less than in other series I've played," said Bell.

"We're desperate to get everyone talking about the cricket and a good series, rather than one incident that maybe got blown out of proportion."

Anderson, Broad and Bell v India, 2014 series
James AndersonStuart BroadIan Bell
1st Test, Trent Bridge3-123 & 1-472-53 & 2-5025 & did not bat
2nd Test, Lord's4-60 & 1-772-79 & 1-9316 & 1
3rd Test, Rose Bowl5-53 & 2-243-66 & 0-22167 & 23

The ICC confirmed in a statement on Tuesday that it was "considering" the decision to clear Anderson of a level three misconduct charge, relating to claims that he abused and pushed India all-rounder Jadeja.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India have written to the ICC to register their disappointment with the outcome, but say they stopped short of asking Richardson to appeal the verdict.

Anderson produced an excellent performance in England's victory in the third Test - taking 5-53 and 2-24 - and Bell believes the reprieved seamer could have a decisive impact once again as the series moves to his home ground of Old Trafford on Thursday.

The five-match series is currently locked at 1-1 heading into the fourth Test in Manchester.

"The way Jimmy handled everything, to get man of the match at Southampton with everything around the corner afterwards, was an incredible effort," said Bell. "I'm sure he'll do exactly the same here."

Meanwhile, Australia batsman David Warner has said Anderson is England's "instigator", but says there is a line which must not be crossed.

"Every team needs one and I think Jimmy Anderson is probably England's instigator," Warner is quoted as saying on Cricket Australia's website.external-link "I know sometimes I'm that (the instigator) for the Australian team.

"We all love sledging out there in the heat of the battle and I think a thing on Jimmy's side is he's actually a bowler, so he can do that.

"As a batsman, we can try but if we nick off, they're just going to send us packing.

"I think it's good for the game on the field but you can't cross that line."

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