Published: Fri, June 14, 2019
Sport | By Wilson Duncan

Veteran cricket commentator responds to ICC 'censorship' following umpire criticism

Veteran cricket commentator responds to ICC 'censorship' following umpire criticism

Holding added that such requests are why "commentators are being more and more compromised by controlling organisations to the point of censorship".

One of Holding's major gripes came when Gaffaney missed an obvious no ball the ball before he gave West Indies batsman Chris Gayle out, meaning the wicket ball should have been a free hit.

Contacted last night by Sportsmail, Holding said he did not intend the email exchange to go public, and had no further comment on the matter.

'Before the event we went to great pains to explain to you all as senior production and commentary personnel of the need to avoid this kind of thing. "It's a strong reminder to everybody involved to uphold the strongest of standards in our coverage".

In a terse reply Holding questioned why he was the only commentator included on the email chain and added: "If those umpires yesterday were Federation Internationale de Football Association officials, they would have been told to pack their bags and head home". India's game against New Zealand got abandoned on Thursday due to heavy rain in Nottingham as the only two unbeaten sides at 2019 World Cup were left frustrated. As a former cricketer, I think cricket should be held to a higher standard.

"It's critical for us that we should never amplify umpires" mistakes by giving airtime to those incidents nor show the umpires in a bad light.

"I guess honest mistakes from the umpires, I don't want to get into the officiating part, but it's just ironic", the all-rounder said after his team's defeat. "Please let me know if I should be heading back to my home in Newmarket instead of heading to Cardiff because I don't agree with what is being suggested here and happy not being part of it".

Holding's commitment to principle has always been established.

The opening week of the ICC World Cup saw performances from players like Jofra Archer who displayed a fiery bowling spell against South Africa; Rohit Sharma who crafted an immaculate century against South Africa; Shakib Al Hasan who has been more than adept at both batting and bowling. In an interview with the Guardian, Holding once remarked: "I resigned from the ICC when they decided they wanted to change the result of the Pakistan game at the Oval (against England in 2006 from a forfeiture to a draw) because of politics".

The situation was resolved after a further email reassured commentators they would not be censored.

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