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Former Otago all-rounder Derek Walker will bring up a significant milestone today.
The 60-year-old umpire will stand in his 100th first-class game when Otago hosts Central Districts at the University of Otago Oval.
Walker could not be reached for comment but the Otago Daily Times understands New Zealand Cricket will mark the occasion with a presentation 10 minutes before the match.
Walker began his cricket career as a useful left-handed batsman and right-arm slow-medium pacer. He played 39 first-class games for Otago and 31 one-dayers. He also played one first-class game for the New Zealand Cricket Council President’s XI.
There was some talk he might make the New Zealand one-day side but he never received the call.
He was, however, part of a very successful Otago side during the 1980s. The crowning glory was the double victory in 1987-88 when the province won the one-day and first-class tournaments.
Walker was instrumental in the one-day victory. He took three for 32 and top-scored with 38 in the tense two-wicket win against Northern Districts at Molyneux Park which sealed the title for Otago.
One of his mentors, George Morris, was umpiring in that match and he has been influential in Walker’s development as an umpire.
Walker’s first-class umpiring debut was at the Village Green in 2005 when Canterbury hosted Central Districts.
Walker made his umpiring international debut in a twenty20 match between New Zealand and England at Eden Park in February 2013.
He has officiated in eight T20 internationals and nine ODIs. His last international outing was in February 2016.