Steve Smith seeking the dressing room’s help on an umpiring decision review has not gone down well with former cricketers like Sunil Gavaskar and VVS Laxman. Both former cricket greats were commentating on the second India vs Australia Test in Bangalore and had a ringside view of the incident.
On a dramatic day when Australia were chasing 188 for a win on a tricky Bangalore wicket on Tuesday and losing wickets quite regularly, Steve Smith’s decision to await advice from the pavilion on whether to seek DRS after he was given out LBW has been branded as fine cheating.
Virat Kohli was just not amused as he shared a few words with his Australian counterpart. Smith was LBW to Umesh Yadav for a ball that kept very low and pitched in line. Smith managed just 28 as Australia collapsed to 112 all out to lose the Test by 75 runs.
“A lot of people was talking regarding this at the commentary box that the Australians looked up to the dressing room to get input from their computer guy whether they should go for referral or not.
“It was quite blatant and Peter Handscomb suggested to Smith and then Smith asked the guy at the dressing room. I don’t think that was in the spirit of the game. We have to see what the ICC and Match Referee do,” Gavaskar told NDTV.
However, Australian great Adam Gilchirst said calling Smith a cheat for what he did would be a tad harsh.
I never played in the review era, but I'd suspect that's against the rules. Not a good thing. Sure he will be reprimanded and move on. https://t.co/PBThYai68l— Adam Gilchrist (@gilly381) March 7, 2017
But calling him a cheat is a bit stiff. https://t.co/lO5VWCCsQZ— Adam Gilchrist (@gilly381) March 7, 2017
“I never played in the review era, but I’d suspect that’s against the rules. Not a good thing. Sure he (Smith) will be reprimanded and move on,” tweeted Gilchrist.
Virat Kohli, in his post-match chat, said that he has seen the Australians looking upstairs before asking for a DRS.
“You have to take a decision on a DRS within 15 seconds on your own. I have not seen other earlier incidents but I saw it clearly when Smith did that today, he was clearly gesturing to the dressing room,” said Gavaskar further.
“If the Indian captain was saying that he has also seen such a thing (seeking input from dressing room) earlier also, then I think the match referee and the umpires should look into it,” he added.
Former India batsmen VVS Laxman and Aakash Chopra have also come down hard on Smith on the issue.
Explaining the incident, Steve Smith said there was a bit of brain fade when he turned to dressing room for help.
“I got hit on the pad and looked towards the non-striker batsman and then turned around towards Paddy. I should not have done that. This happened for the first time. I was looking at our boys, I should not have done that. There was a bit of brain fade,” Smith said at the press conference.
Asked about his animated chat with rival captain Virat Kohli, Smith dismissed it as mere banter.
“Me and Virat were having a little chat out there. There was not much in it, so it was bit of fun, a bit of banter. That is the kind of things happen in these matches. It is nice to occasionally get engaged in such conversations. It was only good fun,” he said.