Bangladesh women umpires made their presence in cricket field with the traditional Independence Cup, which is held every year to mark the country’s Independence Day.
Sathira Jakir Jessy, a former Bangladesh women’s team player, officiated the match between Bangladesh Red XI and Bangladesh Green XI along with Syed Mahbubullah today at the Academy ground of the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium.
In doing so, she opened a new chapter in Bangladesh cricket on a day when Bangladesh emerged as an Independent country in 1971.
“The women umpires had already officiated some of the matches in our country but no one knew about it,” Jessy said here after officiating the match.
Another women umpire Dolly has been officiating matches since 2009, specially in divisional sport, which hardly anyone knows.
“Last week, I told Mithu bhai (Iftikhar Ahmed Mithu, the chairman of Umpires Committee) that I would like to officiate the Independence Cup match. Because no one would have known if I started umpiring from another place,” said Jessy, who completed her umpiring course along with other women’s cricketers in 2009.
She hoped that the BCB will give the women umpires an opportunity to officiate a good number of matches.
“In the country like Pakistan, the women umpires officiate the matches regularly but here we don’t get enough chance as of now. Now when everyone knows about Bangladesh’s women umpires, thanks to this auspicious day, I hope, we’ll get a good platform.”
However, Bangladesh Red XI beat Bangladesh Green XI by 74 runs in 20-over game. Opting to bat first, Bangladesh Red compiled a hefty 269-8 with Rajin Saleh hitting 87 off 37, with three fours and 10 sixes. He was ably supported by Tusher Imran’s 38 ball-77, studded by five fours and seven sixes. Fast bowler Hasibul Hussain Shanto grabbed 5-45.
In reply, Bangladesh Green were bowled out for 195 in 18.5 overs. After the top and middle order batters failure, No.9 batter Jamal Babu struck 62 off 20 with six fours and five sixes to help the side edge closer to 200-run mark.