TWO Far North Coast cricket umpires have gained valuable experience through the Cricket NSW Foundation.
Chen Tay and Benjamin Farrell were part of a program which saw them umpire games in the Sydney premier cricket system.
Six umpires from across the state were part of the program with experience levels ranging from two to 26 years.
Tay, a chiropractor from Ballina, only started umpiring in 2020 and is now a regular in the top grade at Far North Coast LJ Hooker League cricket.
He has also umpired at the NSW Country Youth Championships and other carnivals and competitions around Queensland.
He was due to umpire the NSW Plan B Regional Bash on home soil last summer but it was washed out.
The pilot project from Cricket NSW, also subsidised fees for regional umpire training courses and was set up to alleviate barriers to umpire accreditation.
Bede Sajowitz, from the NSW Cricket Umpires and Scorers Association, said the Cricket NSW Foundation grant helped provide an invaluable experience for the six regional umpires, which will allow them to return to their local association and pass on learnings to improve player and umpire experience
"With the support of the Cricket NSW Foundation, we're delighted to have been able to make umpiring in Sydney more accessible and we're looking forward to welcoming more NSWCUSA members to Premier Cricket in 2022/23," Sajowitz said.
"So much of umpiring is learnt through experiences, which makes the opportunity to officiate in Premier Cricket so valuable for regionally based umpires with any and all levels of experience.
"Being involved with colleagues and players at the highest level of cricket in the state exposes umpires to match situations and officiating techniques they may not encounter in their local competitions which is invaluable to their development.
"Their involvement in Premier Cricket enriches the competition and builds upon the strong collegial spirit that exists throughout the NSW Cricket Umpires' and Scorers' Association."
The regional umpires were provided feedback on their performance from members of the NSWCUSA, including Claire Polosak, Troy Penman and Darren Goodger.
Among other things, the umpires agreed that they would look to inspect the balls at certain intervals of a match to ensure quality is maintained, conduct more official captains meetings post match and encourage more regional umpires to take advantage of these types of opportunities.
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