Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has waded into the controversy over India’s massive 109-run win over Bangladesh in the World Cup cricket quarter-final match, saying her country would not have been defeated if there hadn’t been “umpiring errors”.
Hasina made the remarks while addressing a reception organised for the Bangladesh team by Bangladeshi expatriates in Australia on Friday.
Bangladeshi cricket fans and newspapers as well as International Cricket Council (ICC) president Mustafa Kamal have criticized umpiring decisions during Friday’s match, reflecting nationwide anger over a perceived bias against their national team.
India would not have been able to defeat Bangladesh had “there been no umpiring errors”, Hasina was quoted as saying by the leading news portal bdnews24.com.
“We would have won if the umpires did not give wrong decisions,” she said while addressing the reception for Bangladeshi players in Australia by phone.
“There’s nothing to be upset. Everyone has seen how we were made to lose. We will win in the future,” she added.
Hasina consoled the Bangladesh team by saying “everyone had seen what had happened”.
The premier called Bangladesh Cricket Board president Nazmul Hassan during the function and greeted the players. She claimed Bangladesh would become the world champions someday.
India scored a convincing win over Bangladesh in Thursday’s quarter-final. After Indian batsman Rohit Sharma was caught at deep midwicket while trying to pull a full toss, Umpires Aleem Dar and Ian Gould declared it a no-ball.
ICC president Kamal, a Bangladeshi, accused the umpires of favouritism. "If needed, I will resign from the ICC. Speaking as fan, it appears to me that it (ICC) has become Indian Cricket Council. There needs to be an investigation. A result was forced on us today," he told the media.
The ICC rejected his criticism of the umpiring and described Kamal's outburst as "unfortunate" and "baseless".