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Qalandars raise question over umpiring standards, DRS

Updated 04 Mar 2018


KARACHI: The 12th match of the ongoing Pakistan Super League, staged in Sharjah, had it all.

The thrilling clash between Islamabad United and Lahore Qalandars was decided in the super over, some brilliant fielding efforts shaped the course of the match, a young cricketer from Kashmir impressed with his all-round performance, spinners outplayed pacers, and, of course, Qalandars batting lineup collapsed.

But what went unnoticed was an umpiring error that resulted in the dismissal of Fakhar Zaman which left Qalandars reeling at four for two just five balls into the chase.

After Umar Akmal’s eventful four-ball stay ended with an LBW, Zaman was adjudged out in a similar manner when Samit Patel’s stock delivery thudded on his back leg in front of the leg-stump as he attempted a slog-sweep on the first ball.

The ball, however, had pitched down the leg.

The left-handed batsman stood there and seemed to be consulting his partner at the non-striker’s end for a review, but apparently he was told by Ranmore Martinesz that his side had exhausted their reviews.

“When Zaman wished to review the umpire’s decision, he was told by the umpires that we had no reviews left,” Lahore Qalandars team manager Sameen Rana said after his side’s loss to Islamabad United in a nail-biter.

“When we clarified to them, they accepted that the review is available. But by then Fakhar had come out of the ground … Umpires make mistakes. But when a batsman is informed that he doesn’t have a review [when he does], it is very, very sad.”

Qalandars had taken a review on the previous ball in a bid to save Akmal as there were doubts about the trajectory of the ball. The hawk-eye, however, revealed that the ball would have gone on to clip the leg-stump and as per the new ICC laws — introduced in September 2017 — the review stayed with them.

According to the current laws, a team keeps their review if an LBW decision is overturned on the umpire’s call To a question whether they will take up the matter with the organisers, Rana said: “We don’t plan to register a protest with the PCB.”

Rana was also critical of the Decision Review System (DRS) technology.

“Whatever the rules are in place, they should be consistent. We know this is the first time DRS is being used [in the group stages]. But the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) should be looking to uphold the DRS and umpiring standards in this league. If we look at Brendon McCullum’s dismissal in the last game and Yasir Shah’s first wicket in today’s game, the ball was pitching at a certain trajectory.”

McCullum had gotten LBW off Imad Wasim’s bowling while attempting a reverse sweep. He reviewed the decision and the hawk-eye showed that the ball would have crashed in the middle of the leg-stump.

Published in Dawn, March 4th, 2018