|Full name||Shakoor Rana|
3 April 1936|
Amritsar, Punjab, British India
|Died||9 April 2001
Lahore, Punjab, Pakistan
|Tests umpired||18 (1975–1996)|
|ODIs umpired||22 (1977–1996)|
|Source: Cricinfo, 9 April 2001|
Shakoor Rana (April 3, 1936 – April 9, 2001) was a Pakistani cricketer and umpire
Shakoor Rana had an undistinguished playing career, making only 11 first-class appearances between 1957 and 1973 and accumulating just 226 runs and 12 wickets. He was overshadowed by his brothers Shafqat Rana and Azmat Rana who both represented Pakistan at Test level.
Shakoor Rana became much more notable - not always for the right reasons - for his umpiring than his playing career. He made his international debut as an umpire in 1974 at Lahore, the city that had become his hometown. The match was between Pakistan and the West Indies. His career continued until his last match between Pakistan and New Zealand in 1996 also at Lahore. He stood in 18 test matches and 22 One Day International.
In one of the most controversial incidents in cricketing history, Shakoor Rana notably came face-to-face with Mike Gatting in the finger-wagging incident that stopped the Faisalabad Test in 1987. The image of the English cricket captain and an international umpire shouting at each other with fingers waved in the other's face was a shocking one for the image of the game.
The incident in question occurred on the second day of the test as Gatting was considered by Rana to have made an alteration to the fielding positions as Eddie Hemmings ran in to bowl - Rana correctly stopped the game but controversially accused Gatting of cheating. Rana had already upset the English by wearing a Pakistan sweater and placing Mudassar Nazar's cap on his own head. The game was stopped by the incident and only resumed the following day. Rana and Gatting were both accused of using foul language, much of which was heard by a worldwide TV audience via the stump camera. Shakoor refused to stand again in that Test until he received an unconditional apology from Gatting for the language used in the dispute. Gatting was threatened with being stripped of the England captaincy and was forced into issuing a written apology to Rana. Gatting has since expressed regret at his part in the row.
Gatting was not the only international captain to have had a run-in with Rana. In December 1984 during a Test match in Karachi, New Zealand captain Jeremy Coney threatened to lead his side from the field following a controversial decision of not-out for Pakistan player Javed Miandad.
|This section does not cite any references or sources. (March 2012)|
The controversy surrounding Shakoor Rana was a driver in the move towards neutral umpires at Test matches. The home side had previously supplied the umpires but the International Cricket Council have since brought in neutral officials. Interestingly, the country who put forward the Neutral Umpires choice in an ICC meeting after the Shakoor and Gatting row was Pakistan.