Umpire John Holder rejected £10,000 to influence international

Sharjah Cricket Association Stadium

Ex-umpire John Holder has revealed that he was once offered money to influence the outcome of an international match.

Holder, who stood in 11 Tests, turned down £10,000 to manipulate a one-day international between Sri Lanka and Pakistan in Sharjah in 1993.

"They said if I can somehow lull the Sri Lanka batsmen into putting on a partnership of 85 they would give me £10,000 in cash," Holder, 68, told the BBC's Test Match Special programme.

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Umpire John Holder rejected £10,000 spot-fixing offer

"I said 'you've got the wrong man'."

Barbados-born Holder's revelation comes amid the spot-fixing scandal that has rocked the Indian Premier League.

On Thursday, Pakistani umpire Asad Rauf was withdrawn from the ICC Champions Trophy in June by the International Cricket Council after media reports that he is being investigated by police in India.

Rauf, 57, was one of the umpires in the controversial Indian Premier League match that saw Rajasthan Royals players Sreesanth, Ajit Chandila and Ankeet Chavan arrested for alleged spot-fixing.

At the start of Test Match Special's "Ask the Umpire" feature on the third day of the second Test between England and New Zealand at Headingley, Holder was asked by BBC cricket correspondent Jonathan Agnew whether he had ever been asked to influence a game.

He replied: "I was in Sharjah in 1993 for a one-day international series between Sri Lanka, West Indies and Pakistan.

"I was introduced to a man and offered £10,000 to make sure Sri Lanka batsmen put on a partnership of 85. He told me his syndicate were involved in making money as the game fluctuates.

"I said 'you've got the wrong person'. Players and umpires who get involved in match-fixing have got to realise there's no such thing as easy money.

"Once you get into that, your career is ruined. You'd lose your self-respect, the players and commentators would know.

"I couldn't live my life looking over my shoulder, and I'd always be remembered as a cheat, so I had to say no, and reported it."

A right-arm seamer in his playing days, Holder played 47 first-class matches for Hampshire between 1968 and 1972.

His first international match as an umpire was a Test between England and Sri Lanka at Lord's in 1988, and he went on to officiate in 11 Tests and 19 one-day internationals, the last of which came in 2001.

More recently, he was the ICC's regional umpires' performance manager for the Americas and Europe.

You can listen to "Ask the Umpire" in full on the TMS podcast page.