Umpire Bucknor makes a comeback to cricket after 11 months

November 14th, 2008 - 1:50 pm ICT by IANS  

Harbhajan SinghSydney, Nov 14 (IANS) After being dumped by the International Cricket Council (ICC), following the controversial Sydney Test in January, umpire Steve Bucknor makes a comeback to cricket after 11 months and will stand in the two Tests between Australia and New Zealand.The International Cricket Council (ICC) announced the 62-year-old Bucknor would control the two Tests in Brisbane and Adelaide with fellow West Indian Billy Doctrove.

ICC removed Bucknor after it felt that the Jamaican wasn’t up to the task of controlling the controversial Australia-India Test match in Sydney in January. The match was marred with charges of racism on Indian spinner Harbhajan Singh and Australia’s unsporting attitude.

Indians threatened to abandon the series if the charges against Harbhajan were not dropped and if Bucknor, who also with Mark Benson gave some wrong decisions in favour of the Australians in Sydney, was not replaced.

The ICC promptly replaced the ageing Jamaican with New Zealander Billy Bowden in the next Test in perth.

At the time, former ICC boss Malcolm Speed denied the replacement was to please India.

“It is accepted that Steve, and his on-field colleague Mark Benson, did not have good games by their very high standards and we feel that given the added pressure and attention Steve’s presence would have at the third Test, it is better for the match and for Steve himself if he does not take part,” Speed said.

Englishman Chris Broad will travel to Australia as match referee for the two-Test series.

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