Alan Whitehead, the former first class player and umpire was born on 28th October 1940 at Butleigh, Somerset. Considered as one of the most prominent umpires in England, Alan’s umpiring career was however laden with controversies.
A slow left arm bowler by nature, Alan began his cricketing career at a very young age. Making his debut for Somerset at the age of 16 in 1957, Alan did not take long to establish his spot in the team. The 1959 season saw him playing majority of the matches for the team while taking 44 wickets during his campaign. This included his career best of 6 wickets for 74 runs, which came in a match against Sussex. Alan decided to end his career as a cricketer in 1961 at the age of 20.
Alan Whitehead stood as an umpire for the first time in 1970 in first class cricket. He stood as a first class umpire for 9 years before making his debut in his first One day international in 1979. Three years later, Alan made his test debut, which came in a match between India and England at the Oval. Alan's international career was limited to his home turf and stood for his last test in the year 1987, in a match between Pakistan and England at Edgbaston.
In a career spanning over 35 years, Alan stood as an umpire in 609 first class matches. He umpired 5 international test matches between 1982 and 1987 as well as 14 ODI’s between 1979 and 2005.
Alan Whitehead was standing as an umpire in a first class match between Warwickshire and Durham in 2000 when he was involved in a verbal spat with Warwickshire all-rounder, Dougie Brown. Alan was found guilty of abusing the player and was fined 250 pounds for his misconduct.