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Umpire Shavir Tarapore set to retire after over two decades of service

Patience and passion are the keys to umpiring, believes the veteran official

BCCI Staff in Mumbai 2017-12-16 20:45:24

Shavir Tarapore, who has umpired in over 100 first-class matches, will be officiating in his last match when he stands in the Cooch Behar Trophy 2017-18 match between Himachal and Tripura at the Atal Bihari Vajpayee Cricket Stadium, Amtar. The former Karnataka cricketer took up umpiring in the 1991-92 season with the BCCI.

Speaking ahead of his last match, Tarapore told bcci.tv, “It hasn’t sunk in yet (that it is my last match as an umpire). I am just treating this game as just another game.”

Asked what is his biggest take away from the umpiring career, he said, “My umpiring career started off with a very small ambition, but then as I took more interest in it, I realised that if you work hard even in the field of umpiring you can make it to the top, which I did and of course I have to thank the BCCI and my association for that,” he added.

Discussing the highlight of his umpiring career he said, “Like a cricketer, even I grew as an umpire. I too started at the grass-root level - umpiring Under-16, Under-19 games and climbed the ladder slowly. It is great to see that many people who I have umpired for are today the legends of the game. In fact, I have been very lucky to officiate in Sachin Tendulkar’s three ODIs where he got his highest (ODI) scores; starting off in Hyderabad against New Zealand when he got 186* runs (in 1999). In fact, that was my debut international game. All the three games (when Tendulkar got his double ton against SA, 186* against NZ and 175* against Australia) I was the on-field umpire. I have been privileged to have officiated in matches where Sachin, (Rahul) Dravid, VVS Laxman, (Sourav) Ganguly, J Srinath, Anil Kumble all the big players of that era played. I have officiated at the international level as well as in the Indian Premier League etc. so it has been a good career.

“What I cherish most is that I have made a lot of friends. I also learnt a lot about working with people when I was with the ICC (International Cricket Council). I came across people from different countries and cultures, different mindsets so that also helped me and will continue to help me on how I can work with people with different mindsets and cultures. It also helped me move around quite a bit in different parts of the world and to cricket playing nations,” he said while reminiscing about his long career.

“It has been a great journey as I said. All good things come to an end,” he stated.

Asked about the most memorable moment, Tarapore said, “I climbed the ladder slowly and the icing on the cake was when I got my first appointment to stand in a Test match from the ICC in 2011. Obviously, that was an ultimate thing that anyone as an umpire would look for to officiate in a Test match on-field.”
 
Looking back, he said, “The game itself has changed a lot now and with technology coming in, it has changed in all aspects.” Asked what would be his advise to the upcoming umpires, he said, “For umpiring you need a lot of passion and patience. You will have the ups and downs, but you have to stick to your guns. What saw me through was that I had the passion and I wanted to remain in the game itself and that helped me get where I got to in the end.”