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India vs South Africa 3rd Test: Why ICC umpires stopped play on Day 3 at Wanderers

According to the International Cricket Council, play will start on time, at 1.30 pm IST, on Day 4 of the Johannesburg Test at Wanderers between India and South Africa

cricket Updated: Jan 27, 2018 09:09 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
India vs South Africa,International Cricket Council,Wanderers
Umpire Michael Gough of England, facing camera, signals for the players to leave the field on the third day of the third cricket test match between South Africa and India at the Wanderers Stadium in Johannesburg.(AP)

On Friday evening, in the ongoing Johannesburg Test at Wanderers between South Africa and India, play came to a halt well before the projected time of stumps. This happened shortly after Proteas batsman Dean Elgar was hit on his helmet from a Jasprit Bumrah delivery. (IND v SA 3rd Test, Day 3 HIGHLIGHTS | SCORECARD)

The early close of play led to confusion among fans about the reason behind the same.

The International Cricket Council (ICC) later on Friday clarified that the umpires decided to stop play on Day 3 in order to consult the match referee about the condition of the pitch.

A media statement released by ICC further said that play will resume on time on Saturday.

“The on-field umpires (Aleem Dar and Ian Gould) in consultation with the match referee, and after speaking with both captains and groundsmen, have decided that the Johannesburg Test will resume on time on Saturday. The on-field umpires will continue to monitor the pitch and consult with the match referee should the pitch deteriorate further. The welfare of the players is paramount and two of the most experienced match officials are in charge of the game and will take appropriate decisions. Play on Friday was suspended shortly before the scheduled close because the on-field umpires wanted to consult the match referee regarding the condition of the pitch,” the ICC stated.

South Africa coach Ottis Gibson also reiterated his side’s desire to continue the Test match.

“We are here to play cricket. We still want to play cricket. The match referee’s decision will be based around player safety, they won’t call it off if they don’t think it is safe. If the match referee comes tomorrow and says ‘game on’ then we are going to play.

“Once the decision is made that is it, we will prepare like we do every morning and we will go out and play,” he said. “ The batsmen will try and do their best to bat us to victory. Throughout the whole game on both sides, you saw batsmen wearing a few on the body. India didn’t complain and we are not complaining either,” he stated.

First Published: Jan 27, 2018 08:58 IST