Sydney - Former Test cricket umpire Darrell Hair has avoided conviction after pleading guilty to stealing from his employer in what a magistrate called "a monumental fall from grace."
Hair, who stood in 78 Tests and is remembered for calling Sri Lanka spinner Muttiah Muralitharan for throwing in a Test in Melbourne in 1995, pleaded guilty in the Orange Local Court on Monday to one charge of embezzlement and one of stealing.
A fact sheet said Hair stole $9 005.75 from D'Aquino's Liquor in Orange between Febuary 25 and April 28. He blamed a gambling addiction.
The lawyer for the 65-year-old Hair, Andrew Rolfe, described the offending as "an aberration" in a lifetime of service.
Magistrate Michael Allen did not record a conviction, but sentenced Hair to an 18-month good behaviour bond, noting he repaid the money and was in counselling.