Australian woman breaks gender barrier, officiates in men's cricket match
Australia's Claire Polosak created history to become the first woman umpire ever to stand in a Men's One Day International cricket match when she took the field in the final of the ICC World Cricket League Division 2 in Nairobi.
The 31-year-old, who shattered the glass ceiling and broke new ground for women cricket officials, has previously stood in 15 women's ODIs since making her debut as an umpire in November 2016 between Australia and South Africa.
Polosak was quoted by the International Cricket Council (ICC) saying ahead of the Nairobi game, "I am thrilled to be the first woman to stand in a Men's ODI and how far I have come as an umpire. It really is important to promote women umpires and there's no reason why females can't umpire in cricket. It's about breaking down barriers, creating awareness so more females can come into the role."
"Umpiring is a team effort. I would like to thank all the umpires I have worked with, my local umpires association- NSW Cricket Umpires' and Scorers' Association and Cricket Australia, as well as my family and friends, as without their support, this match today would not be possible," she added.
Meanwhile, Adrian Griffith, ICC Senior Manager – Umpires and Referees hailed her milestone, "Congratulations to Claire for this fantastic achievement of becoming the first woman umpire to stand in a Men's One Day International. It is one thoroughly deserved and a result of her hard work and perseverance. She is a role model for women who want to get into officiating and proves how successful they can be once they are on the right path and get the opportunities."
Polosak has also performed well in a slew of ICC events as she officiated the semifinal of the ICC Women's T20 World Cup 2018 between England and India and four matches at the ICC Women's World Cup 2017. Since then she has made a rapid rise to success.
Polosak's historic milestone came at the conclusion of the ICC World Cricket League Division 2 in Namibia, where USA, Oman, PNG and Namibia have ensured ODI status and a place in the newly-formed ICC Men's Cricket World Cup League 2.
(Cover: Umpire Claire Polosak looks on during the JLT One Day Cup match between New South Wales and the Cricket Australia XI at Hurstville Oval in Sydney, Australia, October 8, 2017. /VCG Photo)