Kim Cotton (PHOTOSPORT)

A world-first for Cotton

New Zealander Kim Cotton is set to become the first woman to umpire a major world cup final after being appointed to the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup showpiece in Melbourne tomorrow night.

Cotton will stand in the final between Australia and India, potentially in front of a world-record attendance for a women’s sporting event, alongside Pakistan’s Ashan Raza.

The West Indies’ Gregory Brathwaite will be the TV umpire while England’s Chris Broad will be the match referee.

The prized appointment is the continuation of a steady ascent through the ranks for Cotton, who began umpiring men’s senior cricket in Timaru a decade ago; was included in NZC’s reserve panel in 2016-17 and stood in the previous ICC Women’s T20 World Cup in 2018.

She umpired her first NZC domestic men’s List A fixture in November; has worked as a television umpire in both domestic T20s leagues and, six weeks ago, in the third T20I between the BLACKCAPS and India.

A lawyer by profession, Cotton officiated in Australia’s weather-affected semi-final against South Africa. Tomorrow evening’s match will her fifth of the tournament.

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