Who Was Asad Rauf? Career, Controversies, and Death
Who was Asad Rauf?
Asad Rauf, former Pakistani umpire, aged 66, died of a heart attack in Lahore on September 15, 2022. Rauf was a member of the ICC Elite Panel, best known for officiating in the 2007 Cricket World Cup and the 2010 ICC World T20. Rauf was considered to be one of the best umpires in world cricket. He officiated 64 Tests, 139 ODIs, 28 T20Is, and 11 women's T20Is. He also refereed 40 First-Class matches, 26 List-A matches, and 89 T20s in all, including IPL matches.
Life and Career
Born on May 12, 1956, to a Punjabi family in Lahore, Rauf was a former first-class player in Pakistan. He was a right-hand batsman who had a steady albeit underwhelming career in the 1980s. However, he lost form soon, around the late 1980s, and played very little first-class cricket after that. His career as an umpire began in 1998 when he made his first-class debut, and he stood in his first ODI in 2000. He umpired his first One-Day International in 2000 and his first Test in 2005. He was nominated to the ICC's Elite Panel in 2006 and served on it until 2013.
In 2013, Rauf was alleged of accusations of spot-fixing and betting on IPL matches. The Mumbai Police branded him as a "wanted accused" in their chargesheet for the controversy after he fled India during the tournament, despite the fact that the Police intended to interview him. After leaving India, he held a press conference where Rauf declared himself innocent. However, three years later, in 2016, the BCCI suspended the Pakistani umpire for five years on the grounds of corruption and misbehavior. The suspension prohibited Rauf from umpiring, playing, or representing cricket in any capacity, as well as being affiliated with the BCCI and its affiliates' operations.
On September 15, 2022, Asad Rauf passed away following a cardiac arrest in Lahore, Pakistan, at the age of 66.
Despite the fact that Rauf was accused of some serious allegations during his career as an umpire, it is undeniable that he was one of the top umpires of his time. Today, the cricket world mourns the death of a fine gem.