Dubai [UAE], September 25 (ANI): The International Cricket Council (ICC) confirmed on Monday that Kumar Dharmasena and Nitin Menon will serve as on-field umpires for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 opener between England and New Zealand, which will take place on October 5 this year in Ahmedabad.
"Kumar Dharmasena and Nitin Menon will be the on-field umpires for the opening match of the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup 2023 between England and New Zealand," said a statement from ICC. The group stage clash, a repeat of the unforgettable final four years ago, will see Dharmasena and Menon joined by TV umpire Paul Wilson, fourth umpire Shahid Saikat and match referee Javagal Srinath.
Dharmasena made history in 2015 as the first person to both play and umpire in an ICC Men's 50-over Cricket World Cup final while Menon will be standing in his first ICC Men's Cricket World Cup match. Shahid will become the first from Bangladesh to umpire in the competition.
They are all among the team of 20 announced by the ICC to oversee the World Cup contests, the list consisting of 16 umpires and four match referees, including 12 umpires from the ICC Elite Panel of Umpires.
Six of those 16 umpires are stepping up for their first ICC Men's Cricket World Cup, while at the other end of the scale, three return, having umpired in previous finals.
There are also 14 returning umpires from the ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2022, with only Shahid and Alex Wharf those who did not officiate in Australia.
Along with Dharmasena, Marais Erasmus and Richard Kettleborough also return, having taken charge of the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup finals in the past, in 2019 and 2015, respectively.
Erasmus and Dharmasena were the men in the middle for both the 2019 final at Lord's and the ICC Men's T20 World Cup 2022 final.
Rod Tucker, the third umpire in the final four years ago, is also selected, which means three of the four officials for the 2019 showpiece return.
Others returning from previous tournaments include Chris Gaffaney, Michael Gough, Paul Reiffel, Richard Illingworth and Joel Wilson.
Menon, who hails from host nation India, is the youngest umpire at the tournament at 39, and is joined by Shahid, Ahsan Raza, Adrian Holdstock, Wharf and Chris Brown in making their ICC Men's Cricket World Cup debut.
The four-match referees are all former international players- Jeff Crowe, Andy Pycroft, Richie Richardson and Javagal Srinath.
Match Officials for ICC Men's Cricket World Cup 2023:Umpires: Chris Brown (New Zealand), Kumar Dharmasena (Sri Lanka), Marais Erasmus (South Africa), Christopher Gaffaney (New Zealand), Michael Gough (England), Adrian Holdstock (South Africa), Richard Illingworth (England), Richard Kettleborough (England), Nitin Menon (India), Ahsan Raza (Pakistan), Paul Reiffel (Australia), Sharfuddoula Ibne Shahid (Bangladesh), Rodney Tucker (Australia), Alex Wharf (England), Joel Wilson (West Indies) and Paul Wilson (Australia).
Match Referees: Jeff Crowe (New Zealand), Andy Pycroft (Zimbabwe), Richie Richardson (West Indies) and Javagal Srinath (India). (ANI)