The Decision Review System (DRS) debate is pretty much dead as far as the Indian cricket board is concerned. They have been adamant in refusing to use it in bilateral series, pointing out that the technology provided is not foolproof.
While the influential Board of Control for
Cricket in India (BCCI) continues to block efforts by the world governing body, ICC, to uniformly implement DRS, umpiring mistakes are mounting in India. The mistakes by home officials are only strengthening the feeling that the DRS could act as the safety net.
With still two more matches left in the India-England one-day series, poor umpiring has already had an impact. Indian umpires, none of whom are currently in the ICC's Elite panel, seem guiltier than their foreign counterparts.
The most embarrassing one was on Saturday when England batsman Kevin Pietersen, in ominous touch, was given out caught behind by umpire S Ravi. Ishant Sharma's delivery rose awkwardly and forced the batsman to take evasive action and there was some deviation before MS Dhoni collected the ball and claimed the catch. But Pietersen did not get a nick and perhaps the sound that led the umpire to rule him out was caused by the bat flicking the pad.
In Kochi, where India crushed England by 127 runs, there were as many as four errors, although the umpires' job was made difficult by the noise from the packed stands. England skipper Alastair Cook felt helpless the DRS was not being used. "Yeah, it's frustrating (KP dismissal) when decisions don't go your way, but that happens in all cricket, especially without DRS," he said in Ranchi.
In the second ODI, Yuvraj Singh and Dhoni benefitted early on while the left-hander was wrongly given out leg before. In Ranchi, KP was in panic mode, vigorously shaking his head to indicate to the umpire that he had not got a touch, but it was to no avail.
The home Test series against England and the Pakistan ODI series also had their share of umpiring mistakes with no scope for a review.