Top 5 Umpires in the history of Cricket


Cricket is one of the most loved sports in the world. It has been successful in fascinating its fans and followers for centuries. Cricket is the most watched sport in the world and is a favourite to millions of people, be it an adolescent or old adults. The popularity of this game has created a landmark worldwide. Whenever a cricket match begins, millions of cricket lovers tune in to watch the cricketing video in order to entertain themselves. In this sport, the umpires play a significant role.

They are assigned to conduct the cricket matches in proper adherence to the rules and regulations of the game. They take decisions on the legal side of the game, keep a record of the deliveries, inspect the wickets and make announcements on the completion of an over. Umpiring is considered to be the most difficult task in cricket as they need to act perfectly without even the slightest of errors in the match. You can also check out sports news today cricket to learn more about such umpires.

Let’s have a look at the top 5 Umpires in Cricket whose contributions are undeniable.

  • David Shepherd: David Shepherd was a top-notch cricketer who successfully played county cricket for Gloucestershirein his playing career. After his retirement as a player, he decided to become an umpire. He is considered to be one of the most brilliant umpires the cricket world has ever seen. Shepherdofficiated in six World Cups, from 1983 to 2003, and was seldom known to make any blunder or poor decision. He conducted 92 Test matches and 172 ODIs, including three consecutive World Cup finals in 1996, 1999, and 2003 as an umpire. He created such an aura that even his most serious competitors respected and adored him. At the age of 68, Shepherd passed away after a long battle with cancer. The world of cricket paid rich tribute to him. Shepherd’s presence as an umpire in the world of cricket remains undoubtedly exceptional. He was given a Guard Of Honour by the Australian and New Zealand players in his last test and was honored with a bat by Brian Lara.
  • Simon Taufel: Simon Taufel is considered to be one of the greatest umpires to have changed the course of the game as he was flawless in his decisions throughout his umpiring career of more than 13 years. Simon Taufel worked in the field of cricket as an Australian umpire. He also has the notable honor of being a member of the first ICC Elite Umpire Panel. Among his achievements proudly stands the grace of winning the ICC Umpire of the Year titles five consecutive times between 2004 and 2008. He is undoubtedly one of the top umpires in the world during his time. Taufel received the rare honor of getting named as the top umpire of the year five times. In August 2006, the ICC’s annual umpire review officially positioned Taufel second for accuracy (with Darrell Hair as the first) and top in overall performance. Among the rarest gems in Taufel’s career lies the umpiring in the final match of the 2004 Champions Trophy. Taufel also holds the prestigious ICC Bronze Bails Award for being the youngest one to act as an umpire in 100 ODIs. Simon Taufel is considered to be the master of the art of umpiring for having an extended career of 13 years and is throned as one of the most remarkable umpires of all time. The unique experience of his distinguished career has helped Simon Taufel to start an online umpiring course in collaboration with the ICC Cricket Academy, Dubai.
  • Aleem Dar: Aleem Dar is a famous cricket umpire from Pakistan. He was a first-class cricketer, a leg-break bowler , and a right-handed batsman before starting his career as an umpire. He became a member of the Elite Panel of ICC Umpires. On 16th February 2000, he made his debut as an international umpire in an ODI between Sri Lanka and Pakistan. Two years later, in 2002, he was made a member of ICC’s International Panel of the umpire and chosen for umpiring at the ICC Cricket World Cup. He received the prestigious David Shepherd Trophyin the consecutive three years from 2009 to 2011. Aleem was successful in justifying his accuracy in the 2011 Cricket World Cup, when all the 15 Umpire Decision Review Systemappeals against him were rejected . Aleem was honoured with the Umpire of the Year award in October 2009, at the annual ICC awards ceremony in Johannesburg, South Africa.
  • Richard Kettleborough: Richard Kettleborough is undoubtedly one of the perfect umpires in recent days. He is a former extraordinary cricketer who played in 33 first-class matches for Yorkshire and Middlesex. He has been awarded the honour of ICC Umpire of the Year for the past three years. Kettleborough initiated his career as a cricket umpire in the year 2009 in a match between England and Australia. Towards the end of that year only, he was nominated in the International Panel of Umpires. At the age of only 38, he was upgraded to the ICC Elite Panel in 2011 as the youngest umpire in the panel of that time. He was given the David Shepherd Trophy for ICC Umpire of the year in 2013, 2014 and 2015 respectively. In June 2021, Kettleborough has been honoured as the TV umpire for the 2021 ICC World Test Championship Final.
  • Kumar Dharmasena: Kumar Dharmasena possesses a unique position as a Sri Lankan cricket umpire for being an accomplished former international cricketer, who played Tests and ODIs for his country. He holds the rarest record for being the first and only person in the history of cricket to represent an ICC World Cup Final both as an umpire and a player. He was a skilful right-handed batsman and an equally deft right-arm off break bowler. Dharmasena announced his plans to become a competitive umpire, after his retirement as a cricketer in November 2006, as he desired to stay closest to the game that he loved so sincerely. His umpiring career started when he took the official duty to oversee the one-day international between India and Sri Lanka at the Rangiri International Stadium in Dambulla. Dharmasena had played in the 1996 Cricket World Cup Final and officiated as an on-field umpire in the World Cup Finals in 2015 and 2019. His outstanding presence in the field of cricket has helped him achieve the title of the ICC Umpire of the Year in 2012, apart from a permanent position of honour in the ICC Elite Umpire Panel since many years.

The contributions of these top umpires in the world cricket are unparalleled. They have created records which people are bound to remember for ages. Their accuracy, perfectionist mentality and dedication towards their work give motivation to millions. It can be said that generations after generations, youngsters are bound to draw inspiration from these exceptional umpires.

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