With the T20 World Cup 2021 approaching, the International Cricket Council (ICC) has named the match officials who will be officiating the matches in this show-piece event of the shortest format of the game.
T20 World Cup will start in the UAE later this month and this will be the first competition after the start of the COVID-19 pandemic where the matches will be officiated by neutral match officials.
Since the start of the pandemic, all the matches around the world have been officiated by the home umpires and home match referees, as the overseas match officials were going to face travelling issues because of the policies of different countries.
However, the T20 World Cup, being a global tournament, could not have been officiated by the umpires of the host country and hence, ICC had to name a total of 20 match officials which include 16 umpires and 4 match referees.
Neutral umpires might start officiating in other international matches as well now
This might now pave the way for the neutral umpires to start officiating in the other international matches as well, as it used to happen in the pre-pandemic era. The travelling restrictions to many countries are starting to ease up now, with vaccination programmes speeding up everywhere.
As far as T20 World Cup is concerned, the match officials have been named only for the first round (qualifying round) and the second round (main round) so far and the names of the officials to officiate in the knockout round of the tournament will be released later.
Here are the match officials who have been named to officiate in the first and the second round of the T20 World Cup 2021 –
Umpires: Chris Brown, Aleem Dar, Kumar Dharmasena, Marais Erasmus, Chris Gaffaney, Michael Gough, Adrian Holdstock, Richard Illingworth, Richard Kettleborough, Nitin Menon, Ahsan Raza, Paul Reiffel, Langton Rusere, Rod Tucker, Joel Wilson, Paul Wilson
Match Referees: David Boon, Jeff Crowe, Ranjan Madugalle, Javagal Srinath