ICC deny Hair~~s claims of pay-off discussion

Published: Monday, August 28, 2006, 23:53 [IST]
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000 dollar to resign from the Elite Panel of Umpires but later revoked the demand saying that he looked forward to continue his international career.

The ICC admitted that several ''informal'' discussions took place between Hair and Cowie but refuted charges that other officials were also involved in the negotiations.

''There were many informal discussions between Mr Hair and Mr Cowie between the end of the Oval Test and Mr Hair's first email on Tuesday, including a discussion on the potential impact on Mr Hair's umpiring career,'' the statement added.

Asserting that Cowie only ''counselled'' the Aussie in his hour of crisis, the ICC said no other issue came up for discussion during the conversations.

''Mr Cowie's role was to support and counsel Mr Hair, as his manager, at a difficult time and it is our understanding that at no stage during their conversations was there any discussion regarding reasons for retirement - all of which were subsequently laid out in Mr Hair's email,'' the spokesperson said.

''We have no desire to be in conflict with Mr Hair. He is one of the world's best umpires and we have no doubt that he was under a great deal of stress when he sent the emails that he later revoked,'' he added.

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