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It would be great if players walk on their own: Speed

cricket Updated: Jan 04, 2008 16:55 IST
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International Cricket Council (ICC) Chief Executive Malcolm Speed has suggested that the umpiring issue could be stopped from blowing over if batsmen choose to walk once they get out.

"It would be great if they were to walk and there was universal acceptance on calling their own decisions. But it does not seem to be going that way," said Speed.

The visiting Indian cricket team has been so upset by umpiring standards exhibited by Steve Bucknor that they at one stage decided to make an official complaint to the match referee.

Umpires are currently allowed to refer only run-outs, stumping decisions, bump-ball catches and catches they could not see properly to the third umpire.

There is now a clamour to allow all decisions - particularly lbw shouts and delicate edges behind - to be reviewed by television replays.

Speed claimed that a new system could soon be in place which would allow teams three chances to appeal to the third umpire. It will be experimented upon at the Champions Trophy one-day tournament in Pakistan later this year.

Speed had also tried to implement this system during the 2006 Champions Trophy in India but the majority support from the ICC's units was not forthcoming.

The system has been used in English county cricket last year but the response from teams has not been positive.

Similarly, umpires had been allowed to ask for television assistance during the 2002 and 2004 Champions Trophy tournaments for lbw and caught behind decisions, but the feedback was not overly positive.

"For the ball pitching outside leg stump, yes, it was helpful, and for some of the bat-pad decisions, yes it was helpful," Speed said.

"But overall the view of the umpires was that the opportunity of stopping the game to refer to the third umpire if there was any doubt did not provide great assistance to them."

Speed said neutral umpires would remain for at least the next two years.