Crowd trouble concerns raised by hosts India influenced the removal of Australian umpire Darrell Hair from the panel for next month’s Champions Trophy, the International Cricket Council (ICC) said on Saturday.
“One of their concerns was Hair’s presence would provoke the crowds,” ICC spokesman Brian Murgatroyd said. “That is obviously something we took into consideration in making our decision.”
He added: “The letter the BCCI (Indian cricket board) sent us of course referred to the concern about provoking the crowds. I guess it is a case of semantics. If the hosts are raising an issue like that, obviously you have to be mindful of that.”
The ICC cited “safety and security” reasons on Thursday for excluding Hair, who was slammed by Pakistan when they forfeited The Oval Test against England in protest after the umpires changed the ball and penalised them five runs for alleged ball tampering.
Indian board secretary Niranjan Shah denied BCCI President Sharad Pawar wrote to the ICC due to security concerns. “We could have provided full security,” Shah said. “He is in the midst of a controversy. There could be some incident, may be shouting from the crowd and the media will also be after him.”
Pakistan skipper Inzamam-ul-Haq was cleared of ball tampering charges following a disciplinary hearing on The Oval Test, but he was banned for four one-dayers for bringing cricket into disrepute.
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) asked the ICC to keep Hair out of their future games and the Champions Trophy. The ICC spokesman denied the omission was any punishment for Hair, among the most senior umpires in the ICC Elite Panel. “No, Darrell Hair is contracted till March 2007 and that remains the case.”
Source:The NewsMore on:BCCI, Champions Trophy, Darrell Hair, icc, India
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