History of the ECB ACO Young Officials
The ACO have been improving the opportunities of young officials since 2008. From then until now, the growth has been steadily progressive. Here is a run-down of what has happened since the push to get more young officials involved in cricket began.
The Young Umpires Award was created and 12 of these courses were delivered across the country.
Following its introduction the year before, seven young tutors were identified and trained so that more courses could take place.
The first development squad was created which included four young umpires. These four umpires were taken to Oakham and were appointed to the ECB Under-13 National Club Finals.
The 2011 season was the most successful for the young officials as it gave a number of them the opportunity to umpire at a higher level. Having increased the number of umpiring squads from one in 2010 to four in the season just gone, there was notable progress.
Those umpires are developing all the time and are continuing to take courses to improve the level that they have reached to this day. ECB ACO is committed to the young officials of today and is helping to nurture those throughout the process, in the expectation that one day a number of them will be officiating in first-class cricket within 10 years.
In addition to all leagues and county appointments this summer, young officials were assigned to 11 competitions across the country. These included ECB National Finals for Under-13, 14 and 15, MCC’s Corporate Day at Lord’s, National Disability Finals, English School Cricket Association cricket and most notably the BUCS T20 finals at Loughborough.
ECB ACO wish to embed qualified umpires and scorers into their county ACOs and provide supported development to help them to reach their potential.
Provided with even greater opportunities than in previous years, the number of officials within the young officials squads continued to increase. Tournaments visited in 2011 were built on, with trips to Bedford, Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire also present on the fixture lists.
In total young officials were appointed to 12 different tournaments and festivals, with some lasting five days.
With all seemingly progressing, Paddy Brown (Lancashire) became our youngest official to stand in Premier League cricket at the age of 17, and Alasdair Shaikh (Sussex) has recently become the first young official to progress through the programme and join the Minor Counties panel.