Four officials to share duties over ten Ashes games

London: Four match officials will reportedly share duties over ten Ashes matches after concerns were raised over umpires` workloads by both England and Australia following the controversies surrounding the decisions regarding England`s Jonathan Trott and Stuart Broad.

The two Ashes rivals have raised their concerns with the International Cricket Council (ICC) about the six-month workload faced by first-Test umpires Aleem Dar, Kumar Dharmasena, Marais Erasmus and Tony Hill, who stands at Lord`s next week.

The report further said that England was angered by Erasmus` decision to reprieve Australian Ashes debutant Ashton Agar following a stumping appeal six runs into his first-innings 98 and his part in the controversial LBW dismissal of Trott on Thursday.

On the other hand, Australia complained about Pakistani official Dar rather than Broad after a thick outside edge on Friday went undetected. However, being the only men eligible under the regulations of the ICC, the quartet will share on-field and television umpire duties for this summer`s Investec Series, and for the return series in Australia.

A dozen best umpires from around the globe are selected by a specialist panel to form an elite list, regardless of nationality, adding that this year`s annual review resulted in eight of the 12 being either English or Australian.

However, the report added that the ICC will not be open to other options, such as a return to home umpires standing in Tests for the first time since 2002, or temporarily upgrading the next best official to take some of the burden.

The report further said that the reason behind ICC`s decision is that familiarity should help build better relationships, countering the fear that grudges grow between players and officials.