Claire Polosak becomes first woman to officiate in a men's Test

From left: Umpires Paul Reiffel, Paul Wilson and Claire Polosak inspect the field after rain during day one of the Sydney Test. Photo: AFP

Sydney: Australian Claire Polosak became the first woman to officiate in a men's Test on Thursday when she took up her role as fourth umpire for the match between Australia and India.

Polosak was the first woman to officiate on-field in a men's One-Day International when Namibia hosted Oman at Windhoek in April, 2019, but her duties at Sydney Cricket Ground will be more limited unless one of her fellow umpires is indisposed.

Travel restrictions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic have resulted in an exclusively Australian umpiring team for the four-match India series.

Polosak, 32, was also the first woman umpire to stand in an Australian men's domestic fixture after officiating a one-day match between New South Wales and a Cricket Australia XI in 2017.

The fourth umpire at a Test match has duties related to pitch preparation, equipment changes and support for the on-field umpires.

There was another first on the opening morning of the third Test when the new edition of the Australian national anthem was sung before the start of play.

The government last week changed the words of the second line of Advance Australia Fair from "for we are young and free" to "for we are one and free" in recognition of the indigenous population's more than 50,000 years of history.

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