Wellington: The former New Zealand captain, John Reid, feels some members of the Australian cricket team are “idiots” who need to be reined in.

Reid's comments came after Australian paceman Mitchell Johnson head-butted Scott Styris in a show of aggression during the first one-dayer in Napier.

“Generally the Australian team looks good, but there are a handful of idiots who need to be reined in,” Reid was quoted as saying in The Age. “Do your work with the bat and the ball, not your mouth.”

While some praised Johnson for sparking life into the series, Reid said the aggression displayed by the pacer was “not required.”

Reid said players need to understand the importance of playing the game in good spirit. “Like it or not, these guys are role models for youngsters. Johnson was the aggressor, but he's mad head-butting someone with a helmet on.”

Reid claimed that in his refereeing time, Australian players were “always the worst at sledging.”

“I dealt with barging by Glenn McGrath, bowlers standing in the way of a runner — like Johnson did to Styris — and Curtly Ambrose knocking the stumps out of the ground,” he said.

The ICC match referee, Ranjan Madugalle, slapped Johnson and Styris with fines rather than suspensions for their showdown in the series opener at Napier but Reid felt the punishment could have been stricter.

“I think he (Madugalle) did a reasonable job but, if anything, he could have come down a bit tougher.” — PTI

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