Umpires support Hair

Sydney Grade cricket umpires will wear a black ribbon this weekend in support of sacked international colleague Darrell Hair.

“The decision to wear a black ribbon this week is aimed at not only continuing to publicly support an outstanding umpire, but also to express concern at a total lack of respect for the role of the umpire by the ICC, along with a demise in the idea of ‘playing by the laws'”, the NSW Umpires’ Association said in a statement issued yesterday.

Hair is a life member of the Association. He was sacked from international duties by the ICC following his role in the Pakistan ball-tamerping affait in England in August. At the time of his dismissal from the international panel this month, Hair was rated by the ICC as one of its top umpires.

Speaking ot the Sydney Morning Herald, Chairman of the NSW Umpires’ Association Tom Donahoo set out the Association’s position:

“In our assessment he’s been a victim of essentially political considerations totally divorced from his abilities as an umpire. All he was doing was applying the laws of cricket – that’s what umpires are paid to do and obliged to do.

What we’re really trying to do is emphasise that this could happen to any of the other umpires – or any umpire – at any time. He’s a man of integrity – he won’t be intimidated or swayed by other considerations”.

Donahoo also indicated his belief that the subcontinental nations were behind Hair’s dismissal. “They have said they don’t want him umpiring for whatever reason. And, because India essentially controls the processes of the ICC now because that’s where television and other rights are, whatever they essentially want, they get”.

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