Melbourne: With the modern-era batsmen becoming more and more dangerous with ferocious hitting abilities, this umpire from Australia decided to guard himself with a self-designed transparent forearm shield recently in a 50-over international cricket match.
Bruce Oxenford, 56, took charge of the second one-day international game between England and Sri Lanka at Edgbaston on Friday by wearing this guard, which raised many eyebrows among viewers.
He had previously worn this equipment during an Indian Premier League match between Gujarat Lions and Royal Challengers Bangalore in April. He had also used this shield in a World Twenty20 warm-up match between Australia and the West Indies.
Calls to increase protection for umpires were intensified when an Israeli umpire was killed in a club match last year after the ball deflected off the stumps and hit in the head, news.com.au reported.
Earlier this year, Australia's John Ward became the first umpire to wear a helmet in an international match during the fourth ODI between Australia and India in Canberra.