ICC announces return of Neutral Umpires to international cricket

The International Cricket Council (ICC) has announced to re-introduce of neutral umpires in international cricket after the COVID-19 outbreak is coming to an end. During the beginning of the pandemic in 2020, the global cricket panel replaced home umpires with neutral umpires to restore cricket.  

ICC chief Greg Barclay, on Wednesday, announced the decision while talking to local media. According to him, COVID somehow benefitted cricket and one of the benefits was the exposure of home umpires. He stated,

"There were some benefits [of Covid] for cricket. One of them was the chance to use umpires at home. It has given home umpires some exposure to international cricket,

"I think that’s good. It spread the base a little bit wider. But, we are on the other side of Covid. So we are reintroducing the neutral umpire arrangement... You will see neutral umpires back up and running again,"

Umpires from host countries have widely been used during the pandemic for two years. However, the decision to re-introduce neutral umpires has been taken following the complaints against the two umpires for their biased behaviours in the recent Bangladesh vs South Africa Test series.

In regard, the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) also said that it may lodge an official complaint to the ICC against those umpires over the claims of unbearable sledging and biased decisions.

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