Cricket Umpires Australia

Umpire profiles

Mike Graham-Smith - Individual 
Born    Burnie, Tasmania 
Occupation    College Mathematics Teacher 
Favourite cricketer growing up    Trevor Docking 
One word to describe you    Pillar 
Favourite sporting team    North Melbourne Kangaroos 
Which cricket club did you play for    Yeoman Cricket Club – North West Tasmania Cricket Association

Tasmania University Cricket Club – Tasmanian Cricket Association

Barnt Green Cricket Club – Birmingham Premier League, England

First ever job    Carting hay bales for local farmers 
Who would play you in a movie    Gerard Depardieu
Favourite holiday destination    Cinque Terre, Italy 
Which sporting event in the world would you love to attend    Lord's Test Match  
Favourite food    Seafood 
Which talent do you wish you had    To be able to sprint like Usain Bolt 
What's the best advice you've received from someone    Your greatest wisdom comes from embracing your mistakes 
If you could invite three people to dinner, who would they be    Robin Williams, Marilyn Monroe and Leonardo Bonacci 

 

UMPIRING BACKGROUND

Why did you choose umpiring?

I didn't. It chose me 

Who has had the most influence on your umpiring career?

My wife, Jane, Tasmanian Director of Umpiring, Richard Widows, Tasmanian State Panel and NUP colleagues and fellow TCUSA members  

Describe your memories from your First Class debut 

Since I took up umpiring I have always dreamed of umpiring at the MCG. My first class debut was Victoria vs NSW at the MCG with full strength teams – 17 of the 22 players have played for Australia (Clarke, Warner, Smith, Abbott, O’Keefe, Lyon, Bollinger, Sandhu, Quiney, Rogers, White, Finch, Wade, D. Hussey, Hastings, Siddle, Ahmed). Excitement in the days leading up to the match. Presentation before the match. Walking out onto the hallowed turf for the first time. The ‘blur’ that was the first session of play. Restaurant-quality meals. Dealing with poor light, ‘go-slow’ tactics and huge appeals. My best man being there in the crowd to support me. The support and encouragement of my family, my mentor, Elizabeth College, CA, CT, TCUSA and my NUP colleagues throughout the match. Relief of having a successful debut 

Which is your favourite cricket ground to umpire at and why  

University Oval, Sandy Bay. I have a lot of fond memories from my playing days with the Tasmania University Cricket Club. You also get great views of Mount Wellington and the yachts on the Derwent River standing at this ground 

What's the strangest thing you've seen happen on field  

In one match I was umpiring at ANZAC Park in Lindisfarne play was stopped when a massive swarm of wasps descended on the field of play. Players and umpires were forced to lie on the ground for 5 minutes until the swarm moved on. In another match – a first grade semi-final at Kingston Twin Ovals – play was stopped when a couple of drunk streakers ran onto the field of play. Now if these two incidents had occurred at the same time it would have been a real spectacle!

Greatest cricket moment you've seen on field  

I don’t pay too much attention to the performances of the players. Peter Siddle taking a lot of wickets on a very flat Adelaide Oval pitch in a Sheffield Shield match and Mike Hussey batting with supreme skill and control in a BBL match at the Olympic Stadium are two standout performances to date 

If you could invent a new rule for the game, what would it be  

A batsman shall be given out, even if the ball pitches outside leg stump, provided he has played no shot and the ball was going on to hit the stumps

Why should people get involved in umpiring?  

All I can say is that I am a better person because of my involvement with cricket umpiring. For that reason alone I believe it is worth taking up 

What advice would you give to aspiring umpires?  

Be a student of the craft. Be open and honest with yourself and with others. Be open to feedback and criticism. Play to your strengths and address your weaknesses. Be fully prepared, be yourself and have fun