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'Darrell Hair has no credibility left'

Press Trust Of India
Aug 27, 2006 at 03:51pm IST

London: Controversial umpire Darrell Hair now finds himself out of favour in English domestic cricket as well with the Players' Association and some sections of ECB questioning his credibility to stand in county games.

The Australian official has gone from being seen as a respected umpire to a villain in less than a week after his actions led to the first ever forfeiture in Test cricket at The Oval and he later asked for a $500,000 payout to stand down from the Elite Panel.

The events have now prompted some members of the English cricket fraternity to wonder whether Hair, who lives in Lincolnshire, should be allowed to officiate on the county circuit next year, the Sunday Times said.

NOT WANTED: Hair is now seen as a villain and not as a respected umpire.

Hair is on the England and Wales Cricket Board's reserve list, and an umpires' spokesman told the newspaper that he would be considered for promotion to the full 25-man panel after the current season ends on September 24.

But an ECB member questioned whether such a move would be appropriate for English cricket.

"Darrell Hair has no credibility left," he said. "I can't see him being welcomed at county games. I'm not sure other umpires would be happy standing with him. I expect he'll become a celebrity umpire, trundled out to officiate in benefit matches and find the fielding side guilty of ball tampering."

The Professional Cricketers' Association has also come out openly in this case.

"In the short term, we think it would be inappropriate for him to stand given that he is in a stressful situation and the focus should be on the cricket," the association's chief executive Richard Bevan said.

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