Hair returns at Old Trafford

Darrell Hair will make his return to top-level international umpiring in the second Test between England and New Zealand at Old Trafford on May 23.

It will be the first Test he has stood in since the 2006 match between England and Pakistan at The Oval. That became the first game in history to be forfeited after Pakistan refused to take the field following Hair's ruling that they had tampered with the ball.

Hair was subsequently stood down from any matches involved full-member nations, although never officially removed from the Elite panel, but continued to stand in associate games. He took the ICC to court claiming racial discrimination, but withdrew his claims seven days into a tribunal in London last October.

He moved back to Australia and went on a six-month rehabilitation course before being reinstated at the ICC's March meeting in Dubai. Hair will stand alongside fellow Australian Simon Taufel at Old Trafford and will remain for the third Test at Trent Bridge when he'll be joined by Steve Bucknor.

It is still unclear where his long-term future lies as Pakistan have made it clear they don't want him standing in any of their matches. His current contract runs out in March 2009.