Dhoni was given ‘out’ due to wrong replay, admits ICC: The International Cricket Council (ICC) seems to have once again put its foot in its mouth when it comes to the use of TV replays.
MS Dhoni was given ‘out’ due to wrong replay, admits ICC. On Thursday, the world body admitted to a grave but avoidable umpiring error that led to Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s dismissal on the first day of the second Test at the Kensington Oval on Tuesday.
In a cruel joke on the Indian skipper, the third umpire officiating in this match – Gregory Brathwaite – was shown a wrong replay of Fidel Edwards’ delivery stride after he dismissed Dhoni off a delivery.
On-field umpire Ian Gould asked for confirmation of his decision that the delivery was a no-ball, but the host broadcaster – read what you will into it – made a silly mistake and showed the umpire a different replay, of another delivery from Edwards, which naturally wasn’t a no-ball.
Brathwaite wrongly judged Dhoni out caught at mid-on in the 59th over of India’s first innings. Upon review, IMG Media – the host broadcaster – admitted to ICC that the delivery that led to Dhoni’s dismissal should indeed have been called a no-ball.
This has to be one of the most embarrassing umpiring errors since technology was introduced. IMG Media said that take these “matters and responsibilities very seriously”, but funnily enough added: “This was a case of human error, compounded by a senior replay operative having to return home at very short notice.”
Chris Broad, of the Elite Panel of ICC match referees, said in a statement: “The host broadcaster for this series, IMG Media, acknowledged the mistake and has apologised. Having looked into the situation, I am satisfied it was an unfortunate but honest mistake in what is a tense and live environment. It is worth point out that the umpires followed the correct procedures and are without blame in this matter. Seeing as the game has continued, clearly there is no opportunity to reverse the decision. We are forced now to put it behind us and move on with the remainder of the match.”
The ICC statement further said: “As this series is not operating under the Decision Review System (DRS), the enhanced standards, including the presence of an ICC technical official, is not in place as would be the case when DRS is used.”
We have always supported the use of technology to eliminate umpiring errors in cricket as well as in other sports. But for that to work, it is not just the technology that must be as close to perfect as possible. Perfection must be demanded also of the men behind the machines. As this case shows, an error by the broadcaster can lead to serious consequences for those on the ground, consequences that cannot be reversed. They could even be gamechanging errors. The ICC must therefore also monitor such errors by broadcasters and penalize them, including the possibility of blacklisting companies if the errors are too frequent. That will ensure accountability, always a desirable situation.
ROBBED BY THE UMPIRE
The erroneous dismissal of MS Dhoni in Barbados, where he was given out after the broadcaster showed the wrong replay, is the latest instance of India being victims of poor umpiring. Here are some of the blunders India won’t forget…
Sachin Tendulkar: Lbw McGrath, Adelaide, 1999:
Umpire Daryl Harper with India struggling to save the first Test, a lot depended on skipper Sachin Tendulkar. But he was adjudged lbw while ducking into a McGrath bouncer. Ironically, Harper was also the umpire when he was wrongly adjudged out to Warne. Harper later expressed regret in an interview.
Sachin Tendulkar: lbw Gillespie, Brisbane, 2003:
Umpire Steve Bucknor An out-of-form Sachin didn’t need a bad decision in the first Test. But umpire Steve Bucknor didn’t quite agree with those sentiments. Despite being hit almost on his thighs, he was adjudged lbw to Gillespie. It was not the first time India experienced Bucknor’s horrors.
Virender Sehwag: lbw McGrath, Bangalore, 2004:
Umpire Billy Bowden India were chasing a mammoth 457 to win and their slim hopes depended on Sehwag, but umpire Bowden failed to spot a massive inside edge. Sehwag’s open remonstration wasn’t difficult to understand.
Sachin Tendulkar: c Kamran Akmal b Abdul Razzaq, Kolkata, 2005:
Umpire Steve Bucknor The joy of the maestro reaching 10,000 Test runs evaporated immediately after Bucknor saw an edge that never was and declared Tendulkar out caught behind. While it didn’t cost India the Test, it prompted them to hate Bucknor even more.
Rahul Dravid: c Gilchrist b Symonds, Sydney, 2008:
Umpire Steve Bucknor India had all but ensured a draw as the two senior pros, Sourav Ganguly and Rahul Dravid, added 61 runs for the fourth wicket. But suddenly Bucknor, who had reprieved Andrew Symonds after he got a huge nick off Ishant Sharma, chose to help the all-rounder again by spotting a non-existent edge off Dravid’s bat. The Test was also marred by poor umpiring from Mark Benson, who didn’t give Ponting out caught behind, and third umpire Bruce Oxenford, who didn’t rule Symonds out stumped.
Suresh Raina: c Sammy b Bishoo, Jamaica, 2011:
Umpire Daryl Harper Harper had already adjudged Virat Kohli out caught behind and India had recovered through Raina and Dravid. But Harper thought Raina gloved an attempted sweep shot off Sammy to leg-slip when the ball had hit pad. Harper then went on to rule Harbhajan out lbw. To make matters worse, a no-ball from Bishoo also went unnoticed and it resulted in Dhoni’s wicket, causing India more heartburn.
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