Life as an international match referee is not easy especially after the ball tampering controversy involving umpire Darrell Hair. Match referee for the DLF Cup tri-series in Malaysia Chris Broad spoke exclusively to CNN-IBN. Broad a former England player played 25 Tests and 34 ODIs between 18984-89. He scored 1361 runs in ODIs at an average of 40.02 including one century and was appointed match referee in 2003 by ICC. He has officiated 20 Tests and 69 ODIs as a referee.
Meha Bhardwaj: First of all how has been the journey. You have been officiating matches for three years now?
Chris Broad: It’s been a fun. Playing is obviously the best part of this great game. But to be involved with the game and officiate at the highest level is a terrific responsibility and a great honour for me. I am enjoying it.
Meha Bhardwaj: Your son Stuart is playing for England. Isn’t it a great feeling?
Chris Broad: Oh! It is fantastic. It is just like reliving my career all over once again. He has not only got into first class cricket but started playing international cricket against Pakistan in the recent One-Day series.
Meha Bhardwaj: So are you going to make sure that the other match referees officiating his matches take care of him.
Chris Broad: Well no unfortunately he is out on his own. I keep telling him what he should be doing but its like children. They must spread their wings and find their own way in the world. We must give them guidance and I do give Stuart some guidance but he has got to find his own way.
Meha Bhardwaj: All right we can’t let you go without the controversial question and you can’t duck. What do you think of the entire Darrell Hair controversy? Was it blown out of proportion?
Chris Broad: Well who says I can’t duck. That’s what I used to do as a player. With the case coming up on September 27, it won’t be right for me to say anything particular at this time. All I can say is that it is a sad situation for all those involved that it has got to this stage. Hopefully there will a suitable solution.
Meha Bhardwaj: How has been your stay in Malaysia? Did you enjoy officiating at a neutral venue?
Chris Broad: Fabulous. The cricket ground is terrific. There is some problem with one or two of the pitches but in general the pitches have played fantastically well for their first major international tournament. The outfield is terrific and the lights are sensational. We would liked a few more local supporters to come, but I guess there was a little problem with ticket prices and may not the promotion that people would have liked to see.
Yet there is tremendous amount of enthusiasm for cricket in this part of the world. If we can do anything to promote cricket here it would be great.
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