ICC (International Cricket Council) has appointed the pair of Anil Chaudhary and Virender Sharma as umpires to stand alongside another umpire Nitin Menon for the first two Tests between India and England.
The trio of umpires will officiate in the first two Tests of the upcoming f0ur-Test series between India and England, thus continuing the trend of home umpires officiating in Tests ever since the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.
ICC Names Anil Chaudhary As On Field Umpire For 1st Test And Virender Sharma As Umpire For 2nd Test
According to a report in ESPN, Anil Chaudhary will be the on-field umpire for the first Test beginning February 5 at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai, with Virender Sharma replacing him in the second beginning February 13 at the same venue.
C Shamshuddin, also part of the international panel, will be the third umpire for the first Test, and will be replaced by Anil Chaudhary for the following match. Former India fast bowler Javagal Srinath will be the match referee for England’s entire tour, which also comprises five T20Is and three ODIs, the report further stated.
Anil Menon, the only Indian official on the ICC’s Elite Panel, will be standing in his fourth Test, while for both Anil Chaudhary and Virender Sharma, it will be the maiden Test appearance.
The final two Tests will be played in Ahmedabad, including a day-night Test starting February 24 followed by the fourth and final Test from March 4.
ICC Temporarily Removed Neutral Umpires From All Formats After Covid-19 Outbreak
ICC had temporarily removed neutral umpires for all international formats owing to the “logistical challenges with international travel”, when in June last year international cricket resumed after the global lockdown because of the dreaded COVID-19 pandemic.
However, recently, England’s Richard Illingworth was announced as a neutral on-field umpire for the two-match Test series between Bangladesh and West Indies. That too was necessitated as Bangladesh don’t have an umpire in the ICC’s Elite Panel and for the same reason the ICC appointed Richard Illingworth as the umpire for the match beginning February 3 at the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium.