India's GS Lakshmi to officiate as match referee in Women's World Cup final

India's GS Lakshmi to officiate as match referee in Women's World Cup final

Lakshmi also has the distinction of being the first woman match referee in men's ODIs

India's GS Lakshmi, the first woman ever in the ICC international panel of match referees, will be the match referee for the Women's World Cup final between England and Australia here on Sunday.

Lakshmi also has the distinction of being the first woman match referee in men's ODIs, having stood in the role during the World Cup League 2 in the UAE in December 2020.

The Women's World Cup final at the Hagley Oval will be overseen by four women match officials -- the first such instance in cricket history. Australia and England are set to face off in the final after having outplayed West Indies and South Africa respectively in the semi-finals.

South Africa's Lauren Agenbag and Kim Cotton of New Zealand have been named the two on-field umpires, while West Indies' Jacqueline Williams will officiate as the TV umpire.

Cotton was the only match official during the 2020 Women's T20 World Cup final between Australia and India at the MCG, having stood as the on-field umpire alongside Ahsan Raza.

Williams, who hails from Jamaica, became the first female to officiate as the third umpire in men's international cricket in 2020, having fulfilled the role during West Indies' three-match home T20I series against Ireland.

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Langton Rusere of Zimbabwe has been named the fourth umpire.

"As part of its strategic commitment to a gender-equitable sport, the ICC has focused on increasing the number of international female match officials, with women comprising eight of the 15 match officials at this event," the game's apex body said ahead of the summit showdown.

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