International Cricket Council (ICC) has appointed Sir Richie Richardson as the match referee for officiating in the landmark Test between Pakistan and Bangladesh that will get rolling on Friday in Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium.
Richardson, who has also officiated for the groundbreaking three ICC World XI T20Is at Lahore in 2017, will be joined by seasoned on-field umpires Nigel Llong and Chris Gaffaney.
Moreover, Marais Erasmus will perform the TV umpire duties and Pakistan's Shozab Raza is assigned as the fourth umpire for the Test.
Richardson was part of the West Indian touring parties in Pakistan between 1985 and 1996 and he featured in six Test and 21 ODIs.
Leading elite panel umpire Erasmus from South Africa and Gaffaney, who hails from New Zealand, will be visiting Pakistan for the very first time while Llong has officiated in six ODIs across Karachi, Lahore and Multan and he will return to Pakistan shores after a decade long hiatus. He came to the land in the ODI series between Pakistan and Sri Lanka in January 2009.
Rawalpindi Test will be the third Test after long cricket isolation of 10 years which ended with the ice-breaking Test series between Pakistan and Sri Lanka that opened the doors for longer format contests in the cricket starved country. Pakistan registered their first points in the ICC Test Championship after defeating Sri Lanka last year.
“We are aiming to collect maximum points from the two upcoming ICC World Test Championship matches against Bangladesh so that when we take the field for the Lord’s Test against England on 30 July, we are in strong contention for a top-two finish by the end of the 2020-21 season. This is what our aspiration is and that’s what are aiming and striving for," Misbah-ul-Haq said.
Meanwhile, Bangladesh coach Russell Domingo isn't quite happy with the scheduling of the tour and said: "It is not ideal. You always want to go there at least seven or eight days before a Test match."
7-11 February – 1st Test. Nigel Llong and Chris Gaffaney (on-field), Marais Erasmus (third umpire), Shozab Raza (fourth umpire); Sir Richie Richardson (match referee)
Mominul Haque (capt), Tamim Iqbal, Saif Hassan, Najmul Hossain Shanto, Mahmudullah, Mohammad Mithun, Liton Das, Taijul Islam, Nayeem Hasan, Ebadot Hossain, Abu Jayed, Al-Amin Hossain, Rubel Hossain, Soumya Sarkar
Azhar Ali (c), Abid Ali, Asad Shafiq, Babar Azam, Bilal Asif, Faheem Ashraf, Fawad Alam, Haris Sohail, Imam-ul-Haq, Imran Khan Snr, Mohammad Abbas, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Naseem Shah, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Shan Masood, Yasir Shah