National Umpiring Committee – Organisational Announcement

National Umpiring Committee – Organisational Announcement

Softball Australia wishes to announce important personnel and structural changes for the National Umpiring Committee.

The position of National Umpire in Chief – Development and Operations was recently advertised and following a lengthy appointment process, the following people have been successful:

  • Reappointment of Debbie Grove to the NUIC – Development
  • Appointment of Kyira Cox as the NUIC – Operations

Debbie Grove (Vic)

Debbie has held the NUIC – Development position for the past 8 years and is very keen to continue to deliver excellent umpire development initiatives across Australia.

Debbie continues to bring a wealth of experience to the committee from leadership and business acumen to an extensive and exemplary umpiring career.  Debbie is one of Australia’s most experienced umpires with an extremely impressive Umpiring CV.  Debbie is a Level 8 umpire who has umpired at National Championships since 1991, appointed to 5 World Championships and the 2008 Olympic Games.

Kyira Cox (NSW)

We are very pleased to welcome Kyira to this exciting NUIC – Operations position, having held Staff Member positions for the past 7 years across both the Communications and Development portfolios, and acting UIC communications for 12 months. Kyira brings to the committee a fresh perspective coupled with years of diverse softball and committee experience.

Kyira’s softball involvement includes a successful playing and coaching career, 6 years working at Softball NSW, a member of the NSW Umpires Committee. Kyira is a current Level 8 umpire with two World Championships. Professionally, Kyira is well credentialed to take on this role, having worked at the Australian Sports Commission and currently at the Australian Institute of Sport.


National Umpiring Committee Structure

Softball Australia has recently restructured the National Umpiring Committee organisational chart.  The structure has been condensed by removing the traditional role of the ‘National UIC’. The program will be jointly led by all 4 UICs with equal leadership responsibility.

The key portfolios will remain the same and each UIC will be independently accountable for their portfolio: Communications, Development, Operations, and Technical.

National Umpiring Committee Executive

  • Umpire In Chief – Communications, Scott Rindfleish
  • Umpire In Chief – Development, Debbie Grove
  • Umpire In Chief – Operations, Kyira Cox
  • Umpire In Chief – Technical, Leigh Evans

Responsibilities relating to strategic planning and partnering with Softball Australia and WBSC will be undertaken by the four UICs in addition to the scope of current portfolios.  More information about specific initiatives will be made public in due course.


 Recognition of Service to Umpiring – Tricia Sibraa

Softball Australia and the National Umpiring Committee wish to acknowledge Tricia Sibraa’s extensive contribution to umpiring in Australia. We are proud to showcase Tricia’s career highlights and achievements in recognition of impressive contributions to umpiring in Australia.

On behalf of the Softball Australia community, we extend appreciation to Tricia for many years of service to the National Umpiring Program.  Congratulations on your wonderful achievements and thank you.

National Positions

  • 2009 – 2017 National Umpire in Chief – Operations
  • 1995 – 2009 Deputy Director of Umpiring Softball Australia

Umpiring / Officiating

  • 1988 to present – National Championships: Tournament Chief Umpire, Assessor and umpire
  • 2008 to present – TCU – Pan Pacific Masters Games, Gold Coast, Queensland
  • 2015 – Tournament Chief Umpire – Pacific Games, Papua New Guinea
  • 2013 – Deputy UIC, ISF Men’s World Championships, Auckland, New Zealand

Softball Awards

  • 2013 – Softball Australia Life Member
    Queensland Sport, Official of the Year
    Softball Queensland Service Award – Diamond – for not less than 25 years of service to the game of softball in Queensland
    Vivienne Triplett Umpire of the Year
  • 2000 – Australian Sports Award
  • 1996 – Softball Australia Service Award
  • 1988 – Softball Queensland Life Member
  • 1981 – Softball Toowoomba Life Member

The Softball Queensland Umpire of the Year award is called the “Tricia Bichel Umpire of the Year” award recognising commitment and dedication to umpiring in Queensland.