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Referee Steve Bennett switches sports from football to cricket

By Alex Hoad
Referee Steve Bennett
Referee Steve Bennett

Steve Bennett, Kent’s top referee, has switched sports following his surprise appointment as an independent director of the England and Wales Cricket Board Association of Cricket Officials.

Orpington-based Bennett, a former FIFA referee and a Premier League official since 1999, will help develop the role of cricket officials using his knowledge and experience gained in officiating at the top flight, and in his role as a FIFA instructor.

Mr Bennett, who reached the statutory retirement age of 48 as a referee last season, said: "I am delighted to have been appointed to the job at such an exciting time in cricket.

"Officials are vital players in all sports and I understand the importance of their role and the satisfaction to be gained from officiating and being part of any match."

Mike Gatting, ECB managing director of cricket partnerships, who also sits on the ACO Board, described Bennett’s appointment as a "inspired choice."

He added: "He is the right man to take this Association forward."

Roger Knight, ACO chairman and former MCC secretary said: "This is a very valuable appointment because we can utilise Steve’s experience and learn how the FA recruited and retained its football officials and managed their education and training."

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