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South Africa Women's Tour Of Australia 2024: England's Sue Redfern To Be First ICC-Appointed Female Neutral Umpire In Bilateral Series

Seven female neutral umpires will officiate across the ICC Women’s Championship series with match-day pay on par with those on the ICC Elite Panel of Umpires

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England's female Cricket Umpire Sue Redfern Photo: X/ @Cricketracker
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England's Sue Redfern is set to become the first ICC-appointed female neutral umpire to stand in a bilateral series during the upcoming WT20I between Australia and South Africa. (More Cricket News)

Redfern's appointment follows the International Cricket Council (ICC) decision to appoint one neutral umpire for all ICC Women’s Championship series as well as any T20I matches scheduled with them, ensuring some neutrality in running matches while also keeping in mind the long-term development of female umpires.

Seven female neutral umpires will officiate across the ICC Women’s Championship series with match-day pay on par with those on the ICC Elite Panel of Umpires.

ICC’s General Manager of Cricket Wasim Khan sees this as a huge development as more opportunities open for women umpires.

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"This is a watershed moment for women's cricket as we look to both implement a female match officials’ pathway programme and accelerate officiating opportunities for our very best performers. Neutral appointments will give female umpires more exposure to different conditions and will support the learning and development of local female umpires who officiate alongside them," he said in an ICC release.

“Last year we had the first all-female match officials’ panel at the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup in South Africa and so we must build on that momentum through a combination of development and high-quality opportunities.”

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Redfern said her appointment will help build momentum and boost the growth of female match officials.

"This is a defining moment for both women’s cricket and female cricket officials, who have worked hard and been given development opportunities in recent years," Redfern said. 

"Personally, I would like to thank the ICC and the ECB for their support over the years and I look forward to more such appointments.”

The ICC said it will prioritise female officials for the neutral umpires’ role in the ICC Women’s Championship series. The ICC-appointed female umpires will get match-day pay parity with their male counterparts on the Emirates ICC Elite Panel of Umpires and receive comparable perks.

The female neutral umpires will be selected on merit and more of them will find themselves in the ICC International Panel of Umpires in the coming years, as part of ICC’s strategic ambition to advance the involvement and visibility of women both on and off the field within the game, the world body said.

Redfern, who played in six Tests and 15 ODIs for England between 1995 and 1999 including four in the 1997 World Cup in India, has been on the ICC Development Panel of Umpires since 2016. 

She has officiated in two ICC Women’s Cricket World Cups (2017 and 2022) and three ICC Women’s T20 World Cups (2018, 2022 and 2024).

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