Only man to play and umpire 50 Tests September 21, 2004

ICC honours Venkat

Wisden Cricinfo staff



Venkataraghavan: top player, top umpire © Getty Images

Srinivas Venkataraghavan, the only man to have played and umpired in over 50 Test matches, has been honoured by the ICC for his contribution to the game. After the engrossing Pakistan-India match at Edgbaston on Sunday, Venkat was presented with a bronze sculpture of him responding to an appeal with his inimitable bent-elbow gesture.

Ehsan Mani, the ICC president, handed over the statuette, expressing his appreciation of a man who - after a distinguished playing career - was recognised as one of the world's premier umpires until he called it quits earlier this year. "Venkat has been an outstanding performer as an international umpire and it is fitting that the ICC should mark his tremendous contribution to the game in this fashion," said Mani.

After becoming an international umpire in 1992-93, Venkat officiated in 73 Tests and 52 ODIs, and was also a match referee for five Tests and eight ODIs. His playing career had encompassed 57 Tests, and though the least celebrated of India's famed slow-bowling quartet, he claimed 156 wickets with his canny offspin.