Best Cricket Umpires of All Time

Best Cricket Umpires

Best Cricket Umpires

Best Cricket Umpires: Whilst cricket is mostly remembered for all those memorable batting and bowling performances by some of the best players around the world, it technically got much more to it to be appreciated in the process.

Best Cricket Umpires of All Time

Best Cricket Umpires: Umpiring is one of such aspect which often gets overlooked in the whole game and although umpires play a key role in the context of the overall game of cricket, they haven’t yet got the recognition they have always deserved. Still, the situation is changing quite swiftly and both the pay scales and the recognition part of the umpiring panels’ around the world have been now taken care of.

As we are talking about this most “underrated” role in the cricket world, let’s take a look at some of the best umpires in the cricket history ever since this sport has been established.

#1 Dickie Bird

Dickie Bird

If umpiring could have been art, Dickie Bird can certainly be quoted as the master. Born in Yorkshire County on April 19, 1933, young Dickie even worked in coal mines whilst been a school dropout. He was mostly into football and went along with his passion before bidding adieu to his career at an early stage due to injury concerns. It was then when he started along with his cricketing journey with his home county team Yorkshire being a player.

Bird’s debut as an umpire came in the first match between England and New Zealand at Yorkshire only and he went on to stand in as many as 66 test matches and 69 One day international matches during his umpiring career. During the same, he was also the part of first three ODI world cups in 1975, 1979 and 1983 and whilst playing his last test match as an umpire in 1996, he received the “ Guard of honor” by both the playing teams. Bird was awarded the famous “Officer of the order of the British Empire”(OBE).


#2 Steve Bucknor

Steve Bucknor

Although he did face numerous controversies at the end of his career, Steve Bucknor would still remain one of the most famous umpires of all times. Quite interestingly, Bucknor used to act as a referee in most of the football matches during the initial stages of his career and switched on to cricket umpiring at an age of 46 years.

He first featured in a test match between India and West Indies in 1989 and also officiated in his first ODI within the same year between these two teams only. During his career as an umpire, he officiated in 181 ODIs and 128 matches and got various honors like “Order of Jamaica”,” Commander class” within the process.


#3 Simon Taufel

Simon Taufel

Simon Taufel can certainly be regarded as one of the most sought after umpires of the current era and officiated in 74 tests, 174 ODIs and 34 T20s before getting retired in 2012. Taufel made his debut in 1999 during an ODI between Australia and Sri Lanka and went on to bag the famous “ ICC  Umpire of the year award” for five successive years between 2004 and 2008.

He was quoted as one of the best umpires of all times by the cricket fraternity and his expertise in the same role bagged him a new designation as Umpire performance and training manager after his retirement from the International cricket.


#4 Aleem Dar

Aleem Dar

Aleem Dar is another very famous umpire from Pakistan who started his career as an umpire in 2000 during a match between Pakistan and Srilanka and selected for the ICC panel of umpires two years later. As of now, he has officiated in 74 test matches along with 151 ODIs and currently been deemed as one of the best umpires from the current panel of International umpires around.

He was awarded 3 consecutive “ICC Umpire of the year” honors during his career in the year 2009,2010 and 2011.


#5 Billy Bowden

Billy Bowden

Billy Bowden’s full name is Brent Fraser Bowden and he is most famous for his uncanny umpiring signals ever since he started umpiring in International matches in 1995 during a match between New Zealand and Sri Lanka. His famous “Crooked finger” whilst giving an “Out” decision and signature “dancing jig” whilst giving a boundary decision is been loved by every cricket fan worldwide.

Till now, Bowden has acted as an umpire in 75 ODIs and 181 tests and he is still going on with his umpiring career whilst been drafted into ICC elite umpires panel in the year 2003.


#6 Daryl Harper

Daryl Harper

Daryl Harper got started with his umpiring career in 1983 and was one of the first umpires hailing from Australia to be included in the Elite umpire panel of the ICC.

He is one of the few umpires who have umpired for 13 long years and although he was forced to retire as an umpire due to one of his controversial decisions at the end of his career, he will still be regarded as one of the most sought after umpires with 94 tests and 174 ODIs under his belt.


#7 Rudi Koertzen

Rudi Koertzen

Hailing from South Africa, Rudi Koertzen first started with his umpiring career in domestic matches in 1981. It was by the year 1992 when he first officiated in a match between India and South Africa and that’s where he went on to make a memorable and successful career in umpiring for the coming years.

Moreover, it was by the year 1997 only when he was inducted into the ICC elite umpiring panel and quoted as one of the most skillful umpires of his era. Until now, he has officiated in almost 108 tests,206 ODIs, and 14 T20s.


#8 Ian Gould

Ian Gould

Ian Gould was born in the year 1957 in England and went on to become one of the most credible umpires of all time in his 10 years of umpiring career in International cricket till now. Not many people know but Gould has played as a goalkeeper for the famous English club, Arsenal and also featured as a wicketkeeper for England’s national team in his early days.

That was the reason he was famous with the nickname “gunner” amongst his friends and family members. Moreover, Ian Gould made his umpiring debut in 2008 during a match between South Africa and Bangladesh and went on to officiate in 30 tests and 73 ODIs till date. Just like other umpires, Gould also has been a part of certain controversies during his career when he became a talk of the town whilst adjudging Indian cricketing legend Sachin Tendulkar out during a match between India and England in 2007 at Rose Bowl stadium.


#9 Tony Hill

Tony Hill

Tony Hill was born in 1951 in Auckland, New Zealand and started his umpiring career in 1998 whilst officiating during a match between New Zealand and Zimbabwe. Moreover, he made his debut in Test umpiring in the year 2001 and it was in 2009 when he was drafted into the ICC Elite umpires panel in 2009.


#10 Srinivas Venkataraghavan

Srinivas Venkataraghavan

Srinivas Venkataraghavan was one of the only umpires from India who made his way into the ICC elite umpires panel whilst representing India in the International cricket for quite some time. Whilst he was famous for his leg spin bowling during his playing days, his umpiring skills also drawn him huge appreciations form the cricket fans.

He officiated as an umpire in 73 test matches whilst featuring in 52 ODIs alongside and went on to becomes one of the most famous international umpires hailing from India.


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