Bucknor to hit Test century in Calcutta

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The Independent Online

Steve Bucknor will become the first umpire to stand in 100 Tests next month. The 58-year-old Jamaican will pass the milestone during the second Test between India and Pakistan in Calcutta between 16 March and 20 March.

Steve Bucknor will become the first umpire to stand in 100 Tests next month. The 58-year-old Jamaican will pass the milestone during the second Test between India and Pakistan in Calcutta between 16 March and 20 March.

The International Cricket Council has appointed Bucknor to take charge of the match alongside Darrell Hair.

The ICC will mark Bucknor's achievement with a "Golden Bails Award". Bronze bails are awarded for 100 one-day international appearances and silver bails for 200 one-dayers.

Bucknor's first major match as an umpire was the fourth Test between West Indies and India in Kingston, Jamaica in April 1989. Known for his lengthy deliberation before reprieving batsmen or raising the finger, he has been nicknamed "Slow Death Bucknor".

Widely respected, he has officiated in 131 one-dayers and four consecutive World Cups, taking charge of the final on each occasion. England's David Shepherd is the next most experienced Test umpire having presided over 86 matches.

Pakistan have accepted a revised itinerary which will see the national team embarking on its first Test tour of India in six years. Wrangling between the two cricket boards has delayed the start of the tour, with the Pakistan team now leaving for New Delhi on 28 February - three days after the originally scheduled program.

Pakistan will play three Tests and six one-day internationals during the six-week tour of India. The first Test will be played in Mohali from 8-12 March followed by matches at Calcutta (16-20 March) and Bangalore (24-28 March).

Calcutta was awarded the second Test after Pakistan refused to play a five-day match at Ahmedabad. Ahmedabad will now host the fourth limited-overs international on 12 April. Cochin (2 April), Visakhapatnam (5 April), Jamshedpur (9 April), Kanpur (15 April) and New Delhi (17 April) will host the other one-day matches.

It will be Pakistan's first Test tour of India since 1999. India toured Pakistan after a break of 14 years in March 2004 and won both Test and one-day series.

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