Ashlee lays down the law

Father and daughter umpires Michael and Ashlee Kovalevs. Picture: Marcus Whisson d405974
Father and daughter umpires Michael and Ashlee Kovalevs. Picture: Marcus Whisson d405974

Kovalevs, who has umpired for the WACA for five years, also played community cricket for 13 years, while daughter Ashlee completed her first WACA season last year.

Ashlee (19) is a Level 2 accredited umpire and the only female umpire on the WACA’s books.

She has never played the sport professionally. She said her family was well-connected with the sport and decided to take up the role so that she could be more involved.

‘I filled in for one kanga cricket game when my brother’s team was short, playing in my ballet tights, but other than that I have never played cricket,’ she said.

‘Initially I thought about umpiring to earn a bit of money during university break but decided to go ahead when some people thought it wasn’t something that girls could do.

‘After a couple of games I realised that I actually enjoyed it and it’s been fun sharing an activity with Dad too.’

Kovalevs encouraged others to try it out, saying umpiring was a great way to be involved in the sport without having to play.

Anyone interested in becoming an umpire should contact WACA umpire co-ordinator Barry Rennie at barry. rennie@waca.com.au