Women's T20 World Cup: The next edition of the ICC Women's World Cup is just a few days away. The 'Women in Blue' are ready to challenge the world for the coveted ICC Women's T20 World Cup trophy. The upcoming edition will be played in South Africa and the International Cricket Council (ICC) has already ensured that they make the event a grand one. This is an interesting time in the women's T20 game. With the advent of the Women's Premier League (WPL), things will get even bigger as far as women's cricket is concerned.
In a historic move, the ICC (International Cricket Council) on Friday named an all-female panel of match officials which includes the trio of GS Lakshmi, Vrinda Rathi, and Janani Narayanan, for the upcoming Women's T20 World Cup in South Africa. Three match referees and 10 umpires make up the 13-woman team and it is a part of the ICC’s strategic ambition of advancing the involvement and visibility of women in cricket. The panel includes seven first-timers and the announcement comes after a constant rise in the number of women officiating in global tournaments.
ICC's General Manager Wasim Khan in a statement said:
Women’s cricket has been growing rapidly in recent years and as a part of that, we have been building pathways to ensure more women have the opportunity to officiate at the highest level. This announcement is a reflection of our intent in this space and just the start of our journey where men and women enjoy the same opportunities across our sport. We are committed to continuing to support our female match officials and provide opportunities to showcase their talents on the global stage.
Claire Polosak is the most experienced of the umpires, selected as she continues her record of officiating in every Women’s World Cup, T20, and ODI, since 2016. The 34-year-old Australian will be officiating in her fourth T20 World Cup, while Sue Redfern of England, Jacqueline Williams of the West Indies, and Kim Cotton of New Zealand will be involved in their third Women’s T20 World Cups. Lauren Agenbag will get the chance to umpire at a World Cup on home soil with the South African selected for her second T20 World Cup with match referee Shandre Fritz to oversee games in her home country at her debut T20 World Cup.
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Meanwhile, Michell Pereira of Sri Lanka will take charge of her first-ever T20I at the 2023 World Cup which gets underway on February 10 as the hosts South Africa take on Sri Lanka in Cape Town. England’s Anna Harris is the youngest of the umpires at just 24 years old as she makes her debut at a major ICC event.
Match Officials at the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup 2023
Match Referees: GS Lakshmi (India), Shandre Fritz (South Africa), Michell Pereira (Sri Lanka)
Umpires: Sue Redfern (England), Eloise Sheridan (Australia), Claire Polosak (Australia), Jacqueline Williams (West Indies), Kim Cotton (New Zealand), Lauren Agenbag (South Africa), Anna Harris (England), Vrinda Rathi (India), N Janani (India), Nimali Perera (Sri Lanka).
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