‘We expressed our displeasure to BCCI’: Sachin Tendulkar reveals why India didn’t embrace DRS initially
India was the first team to use the DRS – in 2008 during a Test series in Sri Lanka – but MS Dhoni, its former captain, opposed the idea. India were the biggest critic of the technology believing it wasn’t foolproof and contained flaws.Updated: Sep 24, 2020, 07:01 IST
Sachin Tendulkar has revealed an interesting nugget related to the Indian cricket’s team equation with the Decision Review System. India was the first team to use the DRS – in 2008 during a Test series in Sri Lanka – but MS Dhoni, its former captain, opposed the idea. India were the biggest critic of the technology believing it wasn’t foolproof and contained flaws.
“When we went to Sri Lanka in 2008, it used to be called UDRS (Umpire Decision Review System). Anil was out captain at that time; he had played for India for 17-18 years by then. Rahul was there, Sourav was there, Laxman was there, I was there... Zaheer, Harbhajan... you name all these guys who were around for a good 10-15 years or even more,” Tendulkar told Aakash Chopra on his YouTube channel.
“In that series, we had referred around 15 decisions (20 referrals in total) to the third umpire and out of those, we were awarded just one decision. So, either we didn’t know how to refer - not able to judge LBWs and these things - or there was something wrong with that system.
“That’s why we expressed displeasure to BCCI. That was for that particular series. Not that you expressed displeasure once it stays permanently. Even after that plenty of developments took place. That was the only time. At least I didn’t say that it shouldn’t happen or whatever.”
Tendulkar, who’s received several rough decisions throughout his career, weighed in on the current practice of DRS, saying he doesn’t believe in the theory of umpire’s call.
“I just feel that when the ball pitches, its centre point, the ball has to pitch inside the line. But when the ball hits the stumps, it need not be to centre point. It could be centre point, it could be left side, ride side or even the bottom of the ball, whatever. When it hits the stumps, it hits from four different points. So whether it is hitting, 49 percent or 51 percent, it should be out,” he said.
“Why do players go to the third umpire? Because somebody is unhappy with the on-field decision. If a new cricket follower is watching, he would only think that ‘the on-field umpire is giving a decision and the ball is hitting the stumps on both occasions. Why is the first one out and not out now?’ So, if the technology is not full proof then we should have more responsibility towards it.”