A website named www.sachintendulkarcritics.com put out a list of 39 dubious umpiring decisions Sachin Tendulkar has received, soon after the retiring batsman was given leg-before off Shane Shillingford on Thursday.
Subsequently, umpire Nigel Llong was projected a villain in the local news channels. A lot of this animosity was triggered by Tendulkar’s body language while walking back to the pavilion. Tendulkar rarely shows his disappointment at a decision, but he was seen gesturing to the team’s video analyst before entering the dressing room.
Llong though deserves the benefit of doubt as he went by instinct, after the batsman was beaten and struck high on his back pad. To the naked eye, Tendulkar was as plumb as they come, as he was struck bang on line. It was a decision that would have gone in the bowler’s favour nine out of ten times. Only through side-on replays was it clear that the ball had struck Tendulkar high on the back leg.
And considering the uneven bounce, Tendulkar seemed unlucky. But remember, there is no provision for umpire referrals because of Tendulkar and India’s opposition to the Decision Review System.
After a minute of pin-drop silence, the crowd realised that Tendulkar was making the long walk back.