England Oval test win restored

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Cricket’s ruling body has restored the initial result of an England win in the controversial 2006 Oval test forfeited by Pakistan.

International Cricket Council (ICC) Chief Executive Haroon Lorgat speaks during a news conference at National stadium in Karachi, August 12, 2008. REUTERS/Athar Hussain

The International Cricket Council (ICC) said in a statement Sunday it had made the decision after taking legal advice and receiving input from the Marylebone Cricket Club, the custodians of the Laws of Cricket.

“I’m gratified the Board reached the conclusion it did as this ensures the integrity of the game and the Laws of Cricket have been upheld,” added ICC Chief Executive Haroon Lorgat in the statement released after its two-day board meeting in Australia.

“I’m especially grateful to the Pakistan Cricket Board for its understanding in this matter.”

Umpires Darrell Hair and Billy Doctrove ruled Pakistan had forfeited the game as captain Inzamam-ul Haq and his team mates were refusing to come out after tea on the fourth day, protesting after they were docked five runs for alleged ball tampering.

The ICC, under protest from Pakistan, had changed the result to “match abandoned as a draw” last July but the MCC told the ruling body it should never have changed the result and that it had set a dangerous precedent.

The ICC appointed an adjudicator to investigate the incident that resulted in the first forfeited result in tests before its executive board altered the result.

The adjudicator banned Inzamam for four games but cleared Pakistan of ball-tampering charges. He also censured Hair for overstepping his authority, after Pakistan largely blamed the Australian official for the episode.

In November 2006, the ICC board suspended Hair from supervising test and international matches for his conduct, restoring him only in March 2008 after undergoing a six-month rehabilitation course.

Hair quit the ICC elite umpires’ panel in August to take up a position in Australia’s domestic cricket.

Sunday’s change leaves England 3-0 winners of the series.

Reporting by N.Ananthanarayanan; Editing by Justin Palmer