Super Series 2005-06 September 23, 2005

Hair appointment fans Murali fears


Darrell Hair no-balls Muralitharan at the MCG in 1995-96 © Getty Images

The appointment of the Australian umpire Darrell Hair to next month's Super Series has revived memories of his calling of Muttiah Muralitharan for throwing in Melbourne almost 10 years ago. Muralitharan has been named in the World XI squads against Australia for the three limited-overs games in Melbourne and the Test from October 14-19 at the SCG. Hair will stand in the second and third ODI matches.

Hair controversially no-balled Muralitharan seven times for throwing during the second Test at the MCG on December 27, 1995, and Muralitharan refused to tour Australia in 2004 for the two-Test series in Darwin and Cairns citing hostility from Australian crowds. Muralitharan, who is second to Shane Warne with 563 Test wickets, only returned to play in Australia last January in the tsunami charity game in Melbourne.

The ICC named Hair, 52, in the panel of four umpires on Friday for the Super Series along with Pakistan's Aleem Dar, South Africa's Rudi Koertzen and the Australian Simon Taufel. Taufel, who has never umpired a Test in his home state, will stand in the Super Test alongside Koertzen while Sri Lanka's Ranjan Madugalle will be match referee for the four games.

New technology will be trialled during the Super Series with a system of referral and consultation between the on-field officials and the TV umpire being used in the four matches. "Run outs and stumpings will be referred in the normal way to the TV umpire with the TV umpire making the final decision," the ICC said. "But in respect of all other decisions, the on-field umpires will have the discretion to consult with the TV umpire before making the final decision."