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|Full name||Stephen Anthony Bucknor|
31 May 1946 |
Montego Bay, Jamaica
|Height||6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)|
|Tests umpired||128 (1989–2009)|
|ODIs umpired||181 (1989–2009)|
|FC umpired||172 (1988–2009)|
|LA umpired||221 (1978–2009)|
|Source: CricketArchive, 15 June 2013|
Bucknor umpired in a record 128 Test matches between 1989 and 2009, and also umpired in 181 One Day Internationals during this period, including five consecutive Cricket World Cup finals from 1992 to 2007. He was widely known for his long deliberations before making decisions, for which he earned the nickname "Slow Death". Before becoming an umpire, he was a football player and referee, a high school mathematics teacher and a sports coach.
Bucknor's first international cricket fixture was a One Day International (ODI) between the West Indies and India at Antigua on 18 March 1989. His first Test match was at Sabina Park, Kingston, Jamaica, between 28 April and 3 May 1989, with the competing teams again being the West Indies and India. After umpiring in a few international matches, he was selected to umpire at the 1992 Cricket World Cup in Australia, and went on to stand in the final despite being quite inexperienced. Bucknor also stood in the next four World Cup finals in 1996, 1999, 2003 and 2007, with the 2007 World Cup taking place in his native West Indies.
In 1994 the ICC introduced a policy whereby one of the umpires in each Test match would be independent of the competing nations, selected from the International Panel of Umpires. Bucknor was a member of this panel from its foundation until the ICC changed its policy on umpires again in 2002. Since then both umpires in Test matches, and one of the umpires in ODI's have been independent of the competing countries. The officials are now chosen from the Elite Panel of ICC Umpires, whom the ICC consider to be the world's best umpires. Bucknor maintained a place on the Elite Panel since its foundation until his retirement.
In May 2006, he accused TV companies of doctoring their images to make umpires look bad and key players look good. He was one of five officials, responsible for the wrong decision in the 2007 World Cup final, resulting in play continuing in poor light. Consequently, all five officials were suspended from the Twenty20 World Championship in South Africa. Dave Richardson, the general manager of cricket at the ICC, has said Bucknor's umpiring accuracy was at 96% during 2005-06, above the average of 94.8% for the Elite Panel. In 2007, he was short-listed for the Umpire of the Year award, which was ultimately won by Simon Taufel. Things turned progressively worse in the following months, when he was removed by the ICC from officiating in the third Test between Australia and India in Perth after his several incorrect decisions contributed to India's defeat in the second Test in Sydney in January 2008 & he was replaced by Billy Bowden for the third Test match. Former umpire Dickie Bird suggested that Bucknor had "gone on too long", while Bucknor blamed Indian cricket board BCCI's financial power for his ouster.
The ICC confirmed on 23 February 2009 that Bucknor had decided to retire from umpiring in March 2009. His final Test match was the 3rd Test between South Africa and Australia at Cape Town on 19–23 March, and his last One Day International match was the 4th ODI between his native West Indies and England at Barbados on 29 March, bringing his 20 year career as an official to an end.
Achievements as an umpire
Cricket World Cup
Bucknor has stood as an onfield umpire in five World Cup tournaments, during which he has officiated 44 matches including five finals.
Test match record
Bucknor holds the record for the most Test matches umpired, and was the first umpire to have officiated in over 100 Test matches (he was later joined in this distinction by Rudi Koertzen). He has stood in 14 Ashes Test matches and officiated in Bangladesh's first ever Test match.
One day internationals
Bucknor has officiated in the second highest number of ODIs, with Rudi Koertzen the only umpire to have stood in more ODIs.
International umpiring statistics and records
|Tests||West Indies v India at Kingston, Apr 1989||West Indies v England at Bridgetown, Mar 2009||128|
|ODIs||West Indies v India at St. John's, Mar 1989||South Africa v Australia at Cape Town, Mar 2009||181|
Bucknor is the first umpire to officiate all the test playing nations at least once (David Shepherd officiated in the all the test playing nations before Bucknor but the match in Bangladesh didn't feature Bangladesh team).
- "Bucknor rewarded for 'Slow Death' century". Daily Mail (London). 22 February 2005. Retrieved 13 November 2015.
- Bucknor Gets Order of Jamaica
- "The global village bobby", Cricinfo, March 1998, Retrieved on 5 June 2008.
- Steve Bucknor and Brian Aldridge for the 3rd & 2nd time respectively in Cricket World Cup Final ESPN cricinfo
- "Umpire Bucknor accuses TV crews of doctored images". Cricinfo.
- "World Cup Final farce". CricInfo. Retrieved 8 January 2008.
- Briggs, Simon (23 June 2007). "World final officials are axed by ICC". The Daily Telegraph (London). Retrieved 24 May 2010.
- Cricinfo - ICC respond to Bucknor
- Cricinfo - Taufel voted top umpire of the year
- Cricinfo, retrieved 8 January 2008
- Bird-Buck stops here Sky Sports retrieved 8 January 2008
- "BCCI used financial clout to ouster me: Bucknor". PTI. 16 November 2008. Retrieved 18 November 2008.[dead link]
- "India used its might against me: Steve Bucknor". The Australian. 16 November 2008. Retrieved 18 November 2008.
- "Steve Bucknor to retire from umpiring". Cricinfo.
- "Ask Steven". Cricinfo.
- Silvera, Janet. (7 October 2007) Jamaica Gleaner Howzat? Firm decisions make Bucknor a hit.
- Tribute to the retiring Steve Bucknor