Sydney: Australia’s Claire Polosak is set to become the first female match official in a men’s Test match when she takes up the fourth umpire’s role in the third Test between India and Australia starting here from Thursday. The 32-year-old from New South Wales has already earned the distinction of being the first woman on-field umpire in a men’s ODI match in ICC’s Division 2 league between Namibia and Oman played at the Windhoek in 2019.
In the India-Australia Test match, the on-field umpires will be two former pacers Paul Reiffel and Paul Wilson while the TV Umpire will be Bruce Oxenford. The match referee is David Boon of Australia.
As per ICC rules for Test matches, the fourth umpire is appointed by the home cricket board from their nominees to the International Panel of ICC Umpires and from the host country.
Polosak, who is a resident of New South Wales’s Goulburn city, has also had the distinction of being the first female match official in a men’s List A game in Australia.
The duties of a fourth umpire include bringing on the new ball, carrying drinks on to the field for the umpires, checking the batteries in the light meter, observing the pitch during the lunch and tea intervals to make sure there is no interference, and bringing on new bails. The fourth umpire can also take over the third umpire’s position if something happens to one of the on-field umpires, in which case the third umpire takes over on-field duties.
Who is Claire Polosak?
In 2017, she became the first on-field female umpire to officiate a men’s domestic game in Australia.
She was part of the team that stood in the 2018 ICC T20 Women’s World Cup.
She also holds the distinction of being one of two female umpires, along with Eloise Sheridan, who officiated together for the first time in a competitive game on Australian soil during the WBBL in 2018.