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Was Dhoni really out?

TV replays showed that the bails had not fallen off when MS Dhoni made it to the crease.

india Updated: Mar 20, 2006 19:24 IST

Indians continued to be generous hosts in the crucial third Test against England on Monday.

Skipper Rahul Dravid allowed the visitors to seize the initiative by inviting them to bat first on day one. India has continued to be on the backfoot since.

In a decision that may have a crucial bearing on the match, K Hariharan, the third umpire, dealt a big blow to the Indian team by declaring Mahendra Singh Dhoni run out when he was taking the England attack by the scruff, having top scored with 64.

Dhoni on-drove Andrew Flintoff to mid on and scampered for a sharp single and James Anderson's throw hit the stumps at the non-striker's end even as the Indian wicketkeeper was running full steam to complete the run.

The ground umpire Darrell Hair referred the run out appeal to the third umpire and repeated replays showed that the bails had not fallen off, as is required under the rules, when Dhoni made it to the crease.

Hariharan is said to have watched the replay six times, but to the utter surprise of many, including England's former captains David Gower and Michael Atherton, ruled Dhoni out.

Earlier on in the series too, at Nagpur, Indian umpire I Shivaram wrongly gave Kevin Pietersen not out when a caught and bowled appeal against the England batsman was referred to him by the on-field umpires.

Anil Kumble had caught and bowled the batsman cleanly but Shivram wrongly concluded after seeing the replays that the ball had hit the ground before being caught by the Indian leg spinner.

First Published: Mar 20, 2006 19:24 IST