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Ahead of ICC meet, DRS turns down Dhoni’s appeal

Jayawardene almost became the second member of an undistinguished list, but like Pietersen two years ago, DRS came to his rescue and robbed Dhoni of the perfect gamble. Rohit Bhaskar report.

india Updated: Jun 21, 2013 02:51 IST
Rohit Bhaskar
Rohit Bhaskar
Hindustan Times
Mahela Jayawardene,DRS,Kevin Pietersen

Travis Dowlin's spot in future trivia quizzes is safe, for now. The 36-year-old Guyanese batsman played just six Tests and 11 ODIs for the West Indies. His Test batting average is 31.18, the corresponding number in ODIs 25.33. It's not for these numbers, though, that he will be part of cricketing trivia. Dowlin is the only wicket India's captain, wicket-keeper and part-time dibbly-dobbly bowler MS Dhoni has taken in his ODI career.

The distinguished Mahela Jayawardene almost became the second member of that undistinguished list, but like Kevin Pietersen two years ago, the Decision Review System (DRS) came to his rescue and robbed Dhoni of the perfect gamble.

As the 22nd over came to an end, Dhoni called Dinesh Karthik up to the stumps and handed over the wicketkeeper's pads.

Dhoni positioned himself at fine leg as Ravindra Jadeja quickly went through the 23rd over.

As the 24th over began, an adequately warmed-up and limber Dhoni angled in to bowl his military medium. The first ball was a 123.8 kmph length delivery that Jayawardene defended. Second ball, Dhoni got it to jag back, Jayawardene was rapped on the pads. Umpire Aleem Dar raised his finger after a long, hard look.

Dhoni and the team celebrated. Jayawardene challenged the decision almost immediately. On the giant screen, hot spot showed an inside edge and the decision was reversed.

For Dhoni, it must've been a case of déjà vu.

Two summers ago at the first Test in Lord's, Dhoni asked Rahul Dravid to don the wicketkeeper's gloves and came on for a bowl. Nine deliveries into that spell, Pietersen played and missed one. Dhoni and the team went up for a vociferous appeal, and umpire Billy Bowden raised his finger. Pietersen, though, was going nowhere and immediately asked for a review.

The DRS technology showed that the bat had not touched the ball but instead brushed the pad. The decision was reversed and Dhoni toiled for a further six overs before assuming his primary role.

On Thursday, Dhoni bowled a further 3.4 overs after that 'wicket ball', but not to much avail as a once bitten, twice shy Jayawardene negotiated his deliveries with watchful ease.

DRS hurt India's chances further when Ravindra Jadeja was adjudged to have trapped Angelo Mathews leg before. The Sri Lanka skipper, however, reviewed the call.

First Published: Jun 21, 2013 01:43 IST