Northern Ireland Association of Cricket Umpires and Scorers

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Chairman's Message - July 2020


I hope this finds you safe and well.

You will all be aware of the NCUs' (and indeed other Provincial Unions) plans to commence competitive cricket on the 18th July (i.e. next Saturday) and indeed most of our membership have confirmed their availability for the truncated season to Ian and for this and in particular the speed of your responses. We thank you.

Talks continue between our Association and the Union with regard to playing regulations and return to play (R2P) protocols which we now have received from IACUS and as of yesterday these have been approved by the NI Assembly as well as the Irish Government.

We now attach a copy of the R2P protocols for your information and if you have elected to stand, you will need to be aware of their content. We would ask that you acknowledge receipt of these by return to either myself, Ian Houston or Joe Moore. Written acknowledgement that you have received them and understand the requirements therein is a pre-requisite to standing in 2020.

Most of us have also confirmed our ECB ACO membership for 2020 and with that, are confirmed as covered by the insurance scheme. Again, it has been NIACUS policy for a number of years that no member can stand in matches if they are not covered by the ECB ACO scheme. The situation re Covid-19 does not change this policy in any way. If you have not confirmed your renewal for 2020 to Joe, please do as a matter of urgency. In the meantime, it is important that you are aware that standing in any game prior to the official re-start game will render your insurance cover voided as confirmed by the ECB. If you are approached to stand in an un-sanctioned friendly game prior to the 18th July, please do not stand in it.

The playing regulations for the new competitions and 2020 have been drafted and are with the NCU board for approval and once these have been so approved, will be forwarded to you all for use on field.

A number of weeks ago we wrote to you to advise that the membership fees for 2020 would be deferred until 2021. At that time we did not expect any cricket to be possible in 2020 so it is a triumph to all in our country that we largely have obeyed the rules of lockdown which has been "rewarded" with cricket. A number of you have paid your subs for 2020 already and the Executive Committee thank you for this. For those who have not, your £20 for 2020 will be deducted from due payments for games you stand in this year. While we appreciate this is a change of tact, we are sure you appreciate that with cricket being played, the administrative costs of the Association will be more than was expected in April when we wrote to you.

For those of you who confirmed sizes for the off-field travel gear, despite the lockdown in March & April we were able to get the jackets delivered. Unfortunately, the polo shirts will not be available for 2020 but we hope to have them for the start of 2021. You can see Alex & Julie modelling the jackets on the website and you will agree they look very smart. (well the jackets and Julie do anyway!). Apologies these have not been distributed before now but we considered driving around the province delivering jackets for a sport unlikely to take place in 2020 as non-essential travel given the lock down restrictions. Now that they have eased, we will make every effort to get the jackets to you over the coming weeks.

The news on the on-field gear is not so positive and lockdown rendered delivery of same impossible and the kukri grey & yellow will not be available until the start of the 2021 season. If you are awaiting grey & Yellow and are wanting to stand in 2020, please advise myself or Ian ASAP. We are prepared to relax the dress code regulations for 2020 and allow the use of the previous Blue or White gear if red ball. This is a situation totally unforeseen. To be clear, although relaxed, BOTH umpires must wear the same colour of gear.

Finally, it only leaves me on behalf of the Executive Committee to wish you a pleasant season and hope you enjoy 2020 as much as previous years. I hope to see you all during July / August / Early September at various venues but if you have any questions , concerns or queries about anything contained in this letter or the R2P protocols, please do not hesitate to contact me - you have the details.

Remember - in order to stand in 2020

  • Confirm availability to Ian Houston
  • Confirm ECB ACO membership renewal to Joe Moore
  • Acknowledge receipt of the R2P protocols

Stay Safe


For and on behalf of the Executive Committee of NIACUS