Lack of communication between two batsmen have often resulted in a run-out or missing out on a run that was there to take. On Tuesday, Australia proved it can hurt while just standing still as well.
It was in the 15th over of their second innings when Shaun Marsh shouldered arms to an Umesh Yadav delivery to be adjudged plumb in front of the wicket to give India a vital breakthrough. Marsh didn’t opt for a review as his side only had one left. Or so it seemed till captain Steve Smith later clarified that he had asked Marsh to ‘go’ upstairs and not ‘go’ back.
“I thought it hit Warner outside the line and said ‘go for it’. It was umpire’s call. That was out. With Shaun, we weren’t entirely sure. I said ‘go’ as in ‘go have a look at it’. But he turned around and started walking,” Smith said.
“Maybe I should have just put my hands up and done it (reviewed). We then saw the replay and it was missing. It would have been a nice one to review. Shaun was looking pretty good. A disappointing wicket at that time, but that’s the game of cricket. You have to move on from there.”
Smith also says he didn't think S Marsh was out, told him to "go", meaning go for the review but Marsh misunderstood & walked off. #INDvAUS— Melinda Farrell (@melindafarrell) March 7, 2017
And that wasn’t all. Five over later, Smith too, was trapped in front by Yadav after the ball kept low and hit him on the front pad. The skipper looked back, looked at Peter Handscomb, his partner at the other end, and then looked at the dressing room as if to seek advice. Although they didn’t go upstairs, that did charge up India captain Virat Kohli who could be seen fuming at the gesture.
“The umpires have to go make a lot of calls. They’re there to do a job as well as they can and everyone makes mistakes,” Smith later said in the post-match conference. “It’s a difficult pitch to umpire on and you’ve got to be smart with your referrals.”
However, that did little to help his cause and as the entire cricketing fraternity lambasted his gesture, Peter Handscomb took to Twitter to clarify that it was his decision to go upstairs.
I referred smudga to look at the box... my fault and was unaware of the rule. Shouldn't take anything away from what was an amazing game!— Peter Handscomb (@phandscomb54) March 7, 2017
Smith later apologized, stating that he shouldn’t have done what he did and termed it as a ‘brain fade’. “It was a bit of a brain fade on my behalf. I was looking at our boys, and shouldn’t have done that. It’s probably the first time it has happened. It was probably a brain fade, but shouldn’t have happened,” he said.