Shivani Mishra creates history by umpiring in men's game. ©Shivani Mishra

Shivani Mishra recently created history by becoming the first woman umpire from Asia by umpiring in the ICC World Twenty20 Men’s qualifying tournament. She is the fourth woman umpire to achieve the feat after New Zealand’s Kathy Cross, Australia’s Claire Polosak and Jacqueline Williams of West Indies.

International Cricket Council (ICC) appointed Mishra to officiate in the Asia Sub-Regional A Qualifying Tournament; which was held in Kuwait. She umpired in four matches. She was the field umpire in the inaugural match between Maldives and Kuwait; while in the other three, she was the third umpire.

In an exclusive chat with Women’s CricZone, Lucknow born Mishra told that she was good in sports and excelled in both athletics and cricket. She developed her cricketing skills while playing with her brothers and cousins. She is in the Gulf region since 1999 and started coaching and umpiring while playing club level cricket in Bahrain. She started taking up umpiring assignments in 2005. Later she moved to Qatar in 2011 and continued umpiring in Men’s Division and Women’s cricket. Qatar Cricket Association sent her to qualify as a Match Referee and Level 2 Umpire and then her journey started as the match official through different courses under the Asian Cricket Council and the ICC.

She manages both her responsibilities as a coach of Qatar women’s cricket team and a part of the umpire educator panel very well. “I like to be involved in cricket in any role. For dual responsibility, I split my time to carry out both. The Women’s team coaching is conducted over the weekend mornings while I take up umpiring assignments during the afternoon or later on all days. I conduct umpiring class as per my association plan. Qatar Cricket Association supports by scheduling my assignments so as to do justice to all the roles.”

An ACC affiliated Level 3 Coach, Level 2 Umpire, ICC affiliated Match Referee and an ICC Asia Coach Educator Shivani Mishra has been umpiring in Men’s Domestic Cricket for many days. “I feel very lucky and am humbled by the responsibility. I umpiring in Men’s Domestic Cricket for almost 12 years now and Qatar Cricket Association wholeheartedly supported me to rise to this level of officiating the game.”

Her experience in the ICC World Cup Qualifier was wonderful and it was a great learning experience for her. Talking about her new assignments, she added, “We have a domestic Night Cricket tournament over the next few weeks and I will be officiating there. Beyond which I look forward to the next international assignment I get.”

While talking about her journey from playing cricket to officiate in men’s game, she replied, “Playing involves contributing with individual talent and performance to a team’s success while officiating demands responsibility to ensure the games are conducted in a lawful manner with all fairness. It definitely is a transformation from the joy of playing to the pride of officiating.”

Team Women’s CricZone wishes her lots of success in her new assignment.

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