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HindustanTimes Wed,26 Nov 2014

Cricket Columns

Spineless boards to blame for DRS debacle
Ian Chappell
February 23, 2013
First Published: 23:39 IST(23/2/2013)
Last Updated: 09:51 IST(24/2/2013)

Cricket administrators obviously don't mind embarrassing themselves, otherwise how do you explain two Test matches running concurrently but being played under a different set of laws?

South Africa and Pakistan are trying to win the same World Championship title as India and Australia but one series is using the Decision Review System (DRS) and the other isn't - how do you justify that and retain credibility?

There'll be plenty of people eager to wag their finger at the BCCI and say: "Be careful what you wish for."

Big Mistake
After all it was their refusal to use the DRS that cost the team dearly in the first innings when Michael Clarke was erroneously adjudged not out on 39 and then went on to amass a century.

I'm no great fan of the DRS for a number of reasons but isn't the 'Clarke case' what the ICC told us it was there to eradicate - the howler? The Clarke non-decision was a howler if ever I've seen one and a workable DRS would have achieved another stated aim of the ICC in implementing the technology; that is, to get the right decision.

The big problem with the DRS is an unstated desire - to get the right decision all the time.

Cricket isn't that sort of game; there will always be fifty/fifty decisions as long as there's an lbw law and that's part of the charm of the sport.

Be Reasonable
Stop aiming to produce a 100% record and concentrate on getting rid of the howler and then the DRS will be a useful tool in the game. This can only happen when the players have no part in the DRS and it's left in the hands of the third umpire to overrule on-field decisions that are palpably wrong.

It's easy to blame the BCCI entirely for the current mess but that's letting the other ICC Test nations off the hook. They are equally to blame for not standing up to the BCCI and presenting a case for all sitting down around the table and reaching a commonsense agreement instead of the current situation, which is an embarrassment to the game.


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