Cricket has been played in the USA for well over one hundred years. Perhaps many of you will be surprised to know that the first English team to tour overseas came to America in October 1859 to play the first international cricket match at Hoboken, New Jersey.
With over 416 cricket clubs and 106 leagues throughout the country, the need for a structured umpire association was recognized.
In 1992, a few umpires had the vision and saw it fit to put their training and skills to work. They recognized the dire need to have trained and competent umpires to officiate cricket matches in the USA. Initially, they focused on the Tri-State area: New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut. The basic premise of their strategy was to formulate an association with a primary focus on educating anyone who wanted to learn and or be a part of the cricketing world of umpires.
The United States of America Cricket Umpire’s Association (USACUA) was formed. The association was incorporated, applied and obtained membership with the erstwhile Association of Cricket Umpires & Scorers (ACU&S) in England and the West Indies Cricket Umpire’s Association (WICUA). Presently, the USACUA is the only cricket umpire’s association in the United States recognized by both the ACU&S and the WICUA.
Realizing that the need for trained and competent umpires extended beyond the Tri-State area, the association formulated a bold and imaginative strategy to have all the umpires throughout the country fall under one umbrella. Months of planning followed. Initially, membership was small but after a decade and a half of being in existence, our membership has now grown beyond the century mark.
To date, our umpires have officiated internationally in ICC tournaments in Kenya, Canada, Malaysia, and Argentina, just to name a few. It is envisioned that within a short time our umpires will be called upon to officiate in Test Matches.
Since our inception, we have been invited to and have subsequently participated in all the WICUA biennial conventions. At the 1997 Convention in Trinidad the USACUA was awarded the privilege of hosting the next biennial. June 1999 saw our historic and successful hosting of the first ever WICUA Convention held in the United States.
The USACUA is cultivating a new attitude for the development of cricket umpires and scorers here in the USA – one in which keeping the spirit of cricket alive is paramount.
We continue to learn and strive to meet the various challenges in this wonderful sport.