Aleem Sarwar Dar (Urdu:علیم سرور ڈار) (born 6 June 1968 in jhang, Punjab) is a retired Pakistani first-class cricketer and a member of the ICC Elite umpire panel. He won three consecutive ICC Umpire of the Year awards 2009, 2010 and 2011, after being nominated twice in 2005 and 2006. Aleem Dar and Simon Taufel were the only umpires to have received the award from its inception until 2012. He has played for Allied Bank, Gujranwala Cricket Association, Lahore, and Pakistan Railways as a right-handed batsman and a leg-break bowler. Since his retirement as a player, he has gained prominence as one of the leading umpires in international cricket. He was educated at Islamia College, Civil Lines, Lahore.
Dar is best known as an international cricket umpire. He made his international umpiring debut in an ODI between Pakistan and Sri Lanka at Gujranwala on 16 February 2000. In 2002 he became a member of ICC's International Panel of umpires. He impressed the ICC with his accurate decision making, and was chosen to umpire at the ICC Cricket World Cup in early 2003, where he was one of the better-performing umpires. His high standard was again rewarded when he was appointed to stand in his first Test match in October 2003; the match between Bangladesh and England at Dhaka. Over the next six months he was appointed to stand in several more Test matches, and as a neutral umpire in ODI matches away from Pakistan.
In April 2004, he became the first Pakistani to be part of the ICC Elite Umpire Panel. Since then he has been regarded as one of the top umpires, being nominated for the ICC Umpire of the year Award in 2005 and 2006, although he was beaten on both occasions by the Australian Simon Taufel, who is also very highly regarded. On 17 October 2007 Dar umpired in his 100th ODI (between India and Australia at Mumbai), making him the tenth umpire in the history of cricket to reach that landmark. He reached the landmark in a record time, taking just seven years, and became the first Pakistani to officiate in a century of One Day Internationals.
Dar has stood in numerous high profile matches, including several India-Pakistan ODI matches and five Ashes Test matches. He was also one of the on-field umpires for the final of the 2006 ICC Champions Trophy, standing alongside Rudi Koertzen. However, the highlight of his career so far, has been his appointment to stand in the final of the 2007 Cricket World Cup between Australia and Sri Lanka, where he officiated with Steve Bucknor. Dar was also selected to stand in the final of the 2010 ICC World Twenty20 between Australia and England. He has, however, never stood in a Test match in Pakistan, because his appointment in the international panel came after the introduction of neutral umpires for Test matches.
In January 2005, Dar and his colleague Steve Bucknor, received death threats during a Test match between England and South Africa at Centurion. He was also involved in a controversy during the 2007 Cricket World Cup final where he, along with fellow officials Bucknor, Koertzen, Bowden and Crowe were unaware of the playing conditions regarding the result of a match under the Duckworth-Lewis system, and made Australia bowl three unnecessary overs in near darkness. Consequently the ICC decided to suspend him, along with the other four officials, from duty for the next ICC event, which was the 2007 World Twenty20 Championship.
Dar proved his accuracy yet again in 2011 Cricket World Cup when All the 15 Umpire Decision Review System appeals against him were struck down.
After being nominated twice in 2005 and 2006, Dar finally won the Umpire of the Year award in October 2009, at the annual ICC awards ceremony in Johannesburg, South Africa. By claiming the award, Dar ended Simon Taufel's run of five successive awards. It was the first time that any umpire other than Taufel had picked up the accolade in the six years that the ceremony has taken place. In October 2010, he won the award for a second straight year. In September 2011, he was named best umpire for the third consecutive year. On 14 August 2010, the Government of Pakistan honoured him with the President's Award for Pride of Performance. He was honoured by ICC for officiating in 150 ODIs.