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Clamour to ban umpire's call grows after Root decision

By Rediff Cricket
February 16, 2021 06:50 IST
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Virat Kohli

IMAGE: Virat Kohli and Umpire Nitin Menon. Photograph: BCCI
 

Virat Kohli lost his cool after the Decision Review System (DRS) ruled out an LBW decision against Joe Root just before the end of Day 3 in the second Test at the M A Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai on Monday.

Left-arm spinner Axar Patel had the ball for the last over of the day and fired a straighter one to Root, who was caught off-guard.

As Umpire Nitin Menon turned down the appeal, Kohli sent it up for a review. There was no bat involved as suggested by slow-motion replays.

The Engish skipper was stuck in his back pad and certainly looked plumb. The ball tracker showed that the ball was hitting the stumps, but the impact was just outside the off-stump and hence, the third umpire had to stick to the on-field call of not- out.

'That's the plumpest LBW I've ever seen given not out by DRS,' Mark Waugh tweeted, adding, ' Problem is the DRS went with the umpire's call for not out for a caught behind not LBW.'

'DRS has got it wrong against Joe Root. He is plumb and ICC has to look into this. The technology is not 100 per cent. Root would be happy to have got away with that,' Mark Butcher tweeted.

Virat Kohli

Virat Kohli

Virat Kohli

Virat Kohli

After Root survived the DRS despite the ball hitting the stumps on replay, Kohli had an heated argument with Umpire Nitin Menon.

It was a weird decision as India had not appealed for LBW and despite that, the decision by the third umpire was to stick to the on-field call, which was based on a caught-behind appeal.

Former umpire Daryl Harper has suggested a ban on the contentious Umpires' Call, saying that after over a decade there is a gap in the communication or the understanding of the concept.

The Umpires' Call primarily comes into the picture if a review has been sought for LBW. In a situation where the umpire has ruled not out, even if the ball is shown to be hitting the stumps on review, the TV umpire has no powers to change the decision.

The only consolation for the bowling team is that its review remains intact.

'I've had enough of umpire's call. Let's just ban umpire's call. Get rid of the controversy and just go with it. Any contact with ball on stump will dislodge a bail. No 48 per cent, 49 per cent,' Harper was quoted as saying by the Sydney Morning Herald.

'The fact it's been going for 12 years and the public are still mystified, and the players are still mystified, would suggest that there are some deficiencies in either the communication or the understanding,' Harper added.

Sachin Tendulkar had also called for the contentious 'Umpire's Call' to be scrapped altogether, terming it as ambiguous, harsh and unfair on players.

Tendulkar reckoned that the concept is flawed and argued that if the ball is hitting the stumps, even marginally, during the ball-tracking segment of the DRS, it should be given out.

'One thing I don't agree with, with the ICC, is the DRS they've been using for quite some time. It is the LBW decision where more than 50 per cent of the ball must be hitting the stumps for the on-field decision to be overturned,' Tendulkar added.

'The only reason they (the batsman or the bowler) have gone upstairs is because they are unhappy with the on-field decision, so when the decision goes to the third umpire, let the technology take over; just like in tennis -- it's either in or out, there's nothing in between,' Tendulkar said during a video chat with Brian Lara.

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