Blazing knock cut short by controversy
Replays of the catch off Dhoni's shot remained inconclusive as Dravid declared the innings.india Updated: Jun 07, 2006 11:07 IST
Is technology better or human judgement? Cricket has been deliberating this for a while and on Monday the Antigua Recreation Ground witnessed what a confusion a combination of the two can cause.
Mahendra Singh Dhoni lifted Dave Mohammed for what would have been a fourth consecutive six, but Daren Ganga caught the ball at the mid-wicket fence. It wasn't clear whether his boot had touched the rope and the third umpire was called into action.
Replays remained inconclusive and on-field umpires Simon Taufel and Asad Rauf called Dhoni and Mohammad Kaif back, who were heading towards the pavilion under the assumption that India would declare the innings if the wicketkeeper were ruled out.
Brian Lara walked up to the batsmen at this point and told them that Ganga had completed the catch cleanly and he would vouch for it. "He told us he was taking the responsibility on behalf of his team," Dhoni said. "But Daren told me he wasn't sure."
The batsmen didn't accept Lara's point, which prompted him to snatch the ball from Rauf's hand and toss it back to the bowler, who walked back to his run-up. The Indians suddenly told the umpires something and left the field.
"The umpires didn't tell me I was out but I told them I was accepting Lara's version and taking his word that the catch was taken cleanly," said Dhoni. "It took us some time to decide because it wasn't an easy decision. Also, Kaif was close to his half-century."
It was later announced that Dhoni was out caught by Ganga, but it wasn't made clear who took this decision - the third umpire or the men on the ground? Going by evidence, nobody did, because the batsmen were about to resume the innings until Lara stepped in.
The umpires later had a chat with the captains and the match referee and everyone went home happy.
A question mark over what they had done remains. How would the umpires tackle such an incident if it happens when a team is not on the verge of declaration?
Indian double centurions against the West Indies
|212||W Jaffer||St John's||05-06|
Openers who've got double tons
|S Gavaskar||3||1971 to 1979||220, 205, 221|
|V Sehwag||2||2003-04 to 2005-06||309, 201, 254|
|V Mankad||2||1955-56||223, 231|
Indian batsman to aggregate 1,000 runs against the West Indies