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Ex-test player Reiffel on ICC elite umpires’ panel

June 26, 2013

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Former test fast bowler Paul Reiffel has been promoted to the International Cricket Council’s elite panel of umpires after five seasons among the second-tier group of match officials.

Cricket Australia on Wednesday said Reiffel, who played 37 tests and 92 limited-overs internationals for Australia from 1992 to 1999, joined the ICC’s international panel of umpires for the 2008-09 season and his progression since then led to his elevation to the elite 12-man panel.

“My aim was to reach the highest level of international umpiring ... it always seemed a long way off so it’s very rewarding and exciting to achieve the goal I set myself when I first started umpiring,” the 47-year-old Reiffel said.

New Zealand’s Billy Bowden and Pakistan’s Asad Rauf have been dropped from the elite panel, giving up their places to Reiffel and England’s Richard Illingworth.

The 50-year-old Bowden had been a member of the panel for almost 15 years, standing in 75 test matches.

New Zealand umpiring manager Rodger McHarg said he was at a loss to understand Bowden’s demotion.

“It’s very disappointing for Billy and, yes, I was surprised,” McHarg said. “I know Billy has been working very hard and is still acknowledged as one of the best decision-makers in the game.”

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