ICC scolds NZ umpire over no-ball comments

The International Cricket Council (ICC) has rebuked New Zealand umpire Tony Hill for publicly airing his belief that Pakistan players deliberately bowled no-balls, a report said on Friday.

Hill and compatriot Billy Bowden officiated in Pakistan’s Test against England at Lord’s last month, which is at the centre of newspaper allegations of a betting scam in which no-balls were bowled to order.

Hill told Wellington’s Dominion Post this week that he suspected Pakistan bowlers sent down no-balls on purpose against England last month but did not link the tactic to corruption.

Radio New Zealand on Friday said the ICC had reprimanded Hill over his comments and told him not to discuss the matter further until investigations were complete.

Hill told the Dominion Post that during the match he and Bowden discussed the possibility that Aamer and Asif were deliberately bowling no-balls by overstepping the crease.

But he said they thought it was simply a tactic to unsettle in-form England batsman Jonathan Trott, rather than anything to do with betting.