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Central Sparks a delighted to announce the launch of Howzat?! – a free online umpiring course for women and girls. The course is open to anyone, regardless of whether they have ever umpired or played before.

Participants will finish the course with an ECB Umpire Stage One qualification. An onboarding session will be delivered by Suzanne Redfern MBE, who has been a member of the ICC’s Development Panel of Umpires since 2016.

This course is designed to give you an overview of the basic Laws of the game and how to apply them and introduce the principles of field craft and match management. It will give you the tools to enable you to umpire matches at the basic recreational level where there are no independent umpires appointed.

After the onboarding session, participants will be able to complete the course online at their own pace, with support available if required.

For those who complete Stage One and have an interest in taking their learning further, Howzat?! will offer a heavily subsidised ECB Umpire Stage Two course.. This five-week course will give you further knowledge and skills sufficient to become a member of a league panel – and to stand in matches when cricket returns this summer.

The first session of Stage Two will be run on Tuesday 6th April and will be delivered via blended learning by Sue and regional tutors from the West Midlands region. If there is sufficient interest, a second course will be run alongside.

To register for Stage One of Howzat?!, please use this link. The onboarding session will be delivered over Zoom at 7pm on 17th March 2021, and you will receive a link to the onboarding session 24 hours before the scheduled start time.

For anyone who wishes to join the course but is unable to make the onboarding session at the scheduled time, please note this in your registration and we can send you the recording.

If you have any questions regarding the course, please contact


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