Taufel meets Lorgat to narrate his Lahore experience

March 10th, 2009 - 7:27 pm ICT by IANS  

Sydney, March 10 (IANS) Umpire Simon Taufel has met International Cricket Council (ICC) chief executive Haroon Lorgat here to “clear the air” on his going public with what happened in Lahore when terrorists attacked the convoy carrying the Sri Lanka players and the match officials last week.
During a two-hour meeting with Lorgat Monday, Taufel gave a graphic description of how he lay on the floor of a mini bus along with other match officials expecting to die when they were ambushed on the way to the Gaddafi Stadium by terrorists.

Taufel sought to know the import of Lorgat’s comments Sunday, suggesting Taufel and fellow umpire Steve Davis need time “to be more rational” in the wake of strong criticism by them and match referee Chris Broad on the lack of security, reports the Australian.

Taufel believes the security failure was symptomatic of cricket’s wider problems.

“Haroon and I talked about the experience of Lahore, but more particularly we talked about the broader picture and what the ICC could do to deal with the issues involved,” Taufel said.

“It’s got implications for how the ICC operates in future.

“That was my main message to Haroon. We need to look at the lessons outside of that incident because what happened in Lahore is a symptom of how cricket is managed and operated.

“The whole issue of how cricket is run needs to be looked at by the (ICC) board and the chief executives (of the 10 so-called Test playing countries).

“Pointing the finger at organisations or administrators is not helpful. I’d rather work with the administrators and do everything I can to help,” he said.

“I offered that to Haroon. If I can be in front of directors or chief executives and put a point of view, I’m happy to do that.”

Taufel will visit a psychologist Wednesday and if all is well, he and his wife, Helen, will prepare to fly to New Zealand Monday.

He is scheduled to stand in the first Test between New Zealand and India in Hamilton, which begins Saturday week.

They would then fly home to Australia and return to New Zealand for the third Test early next month.

“We’re going to make a couple of short trips to reassure the children so they will be happier than when I’m away for four and five-week stints,” Taufel said.

“Helen and I need to keep reassuring the kids that dad is OK and dad will come home, and Helen needs that too.

“She needs constant reassurance and so does my immediate family and the people I spend a lot of time with,” he said.

“We want to make sure we do this right, and we don’t just gloss over the fact that there’s been an incident with a high degree of sensitivity and don’t take people’s feelings for granted.

“Everyone deals with that in different ways.”

Taufel insisted that despite the trauma of Lahore, his main focus was helping cricket.

Taufel did not ask Lorgat for any blanket assurances about safety and security in the future.

“Nobody can make those guarantees,” he said. “What I’m more interested in so far as match officials are concerned is that we develop a system and a process where we are a little bit more in control of our own destiny.”

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