Sun | Sep 24, 2023

New umpires’ association boss aims to improve stock, standard

Published:Saturday | May 27, 2023 | 12:57 AMLennox Aldred/Gleaner Writer
Atol Hamilton
Atol Hamilton

The Jamaica Umpires Association has a new president with former umpire Athol Hamilton elected to lead the body for the next 12 months.

Hamilton, a former Cricket West Indies regional panel umpire, has close to two decades of service, and he will lead an executive that also includes attorney Michael Howell who will serve as first vice president.

The other members of the executive are Earl Pottinger, second vice president; Oraine Ebanks, third vice president; Daniel Warren-Kidd, ecretary; Sean Johnson. assistant secretary; John Largie, recording Secretary; Terrence Richards, treasurer; and Omar Neil, assistant treasurer.

The executive will also be joined by managing committee members and zone chairmen Michael Rowe (Central Zone), Everton Davis (North Zone), Kerry Scott (East Zone) and Cecil Fletcher (West Zone).

Hamilton and some 30 members from his association are expected to travel to the Cayman Islands in July for the West Indies Cricket Umpires Association conference and one of his mandates is to bolster the number of officials locally.

“First off we want to improve the standard of umpiring in the country and also it is imperative that we also bolster the number of officials in the country. I would love to also see more of our officials join the ICC panel and join our very own Patrick Gustard and Jacqueline Williams on that elite list.”

The new executive is already putting plans in place to increase the active number of umpires which currently stands at approximately 100.

“What we want to do right away is to improve the number of officials in certain zones which need urgent attention. Zones such as the west which includes Trelawny, St James, Hanover and Westmorland, need urgent attention, and we are going to be putting training programmes in place to ensure that we address that problem,” added Hamilton.

Hamilton, who is also a former second and third vice president of the Jamaica Umpires Association, said the eastern zone, which includes Portland, also needs more officials, especially at the local Senior Cup and schoolboy levels.

“We are working on our training programmes and have developed a syllabus and we hope that through these initiatives we will turn out better-quality umpires,” Hamilton said.