Dubai: South Africa’s Adrian Holdstock and Pakistan’s Ahsan Raza have been included in the Emirates ICC Elite Panel of Umpires even as veteran Aleem Dar has stepped down after 19 years on the Elite panel, standing in a record 435 mens international matches.
The ICC Elite Umpire Selection Panel headed by ICC General Manager – Cricket, Wasim Khan, made the additions during the annual review and selection process, increasing the number of umpires on the panel from 11 to 12.
Holdstock has officiated in five Tests, 42 ODIs and 48 T20Is while Ahsan has stood in seven Tests, 41 ODIs and 72 T20Is. Both umpires were part of the panels for the ICC Men’s T20 World Cups in 2021 and 2022.
Holdstock and Ahsan were enthusiastic about being inducted into the panel.
“I’m excited about the upcoming opportunities and look forward to giving my all in the new position. I appreciate all my colleagues, the ICC and Cricket South Africa for their support over the years. In addition, I want to thank my family, especially my wife Carmen, without whom I would not have been able to continue in a profession I love so much,” said Holdstock.
Ahsan Raza hoped to put all his experience to good use and continue to learn from his senior colleagues on the panel.
“I’ve always wanted to officiate regularly alongside the best match officials. I have already officiated in international matches across formats as well as in ICC events, so am aware of the enormous responsibility that this position entails. I hope to put all my experience over the years to good use but will continue to learn from my senior colleagues on the panel,” he was quoted as saying by the ICC in a release.
The other members of the panel are Chris Gaffaney (New Zealand), Kumar Dharmasena (Sri Lanka), Marais Erasmus (South Africa), Michael Gough (England), Nitin Menon (India), Paul Reiffel (Australia), Richard Illingworth (England), Richard Kettleborough (England), Rodney Tucker (Australia), Joel Wilson (West Indies).
There is no change in the Emirates ICC Elite Panel of Match Referees, the ICC informed.
Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Najam Sethi congratulated Ahsan Raza on his appointment.
“It is a moment of great pride and joy for the whole nation that Ahsan Raza has become the third Pakistan umpire to be appointed to the ICC Elite Panel of Umpires. I want to congratulate Ahsan on this wonderful achievement and I am sure he will continue to work hard with dedication and passion to enhance the image and profile of this noble profession,” he said.
“Ahsan is a great inspiration for many young and upcoming umpires and his elevation demonstrates we have talented umpires in Pakistan who are skilled enough to break into the top category. I hope we, at the PCB, will continue to utilise his expertise, knowledge and experience in our domestic and international matches,” he added
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