The use of technology has given an extra layer of protection to the players on the field. The ability to challenge an umpire decision is probably one of the best things that have happened to the sport. After years of players criticising umpires for adjudging them out wrongly, the Decision Review System or DRS has opened up a platform where players can actually check if they are not satisfied with the decision from the umpire.
However, players have not always been able to use DRS properly. It is quite difficult for a player to discuss it with their teammates properly within 15 seconds and then go for the review. This has sometimes created a situation where the players have asked for a very stupid review.
Without further to do, let us check 5 Dumbest DRS calls in cricket history:
1. Mushfiqur Rahim
This incident took place during a Test match between India and Bangladesh in Hyderabad in 2017. Virat Kohli was batting quite well and the visitors were having a tough day on the field already. Taijul Islam bowled a normal ball, which didn’t spin much and Kohli pushed the ball from the middle of his bat while stretching his front foot forward.
While Taijul was walking back to his bowling mark, captain Mushfiqur Rahim kept appealing for a leg before wicket. As the umpire didn’t give Kohli out, Rahim out of desperation to get a wicket decided to take a review. All this while, Kohli kept standing and smiling knowing that he had hit it.
Once the slow-motion replays were played, the third umpire could see that ball had clearly hit in the middle of the bat. In fact, the ball had hit no part of the pads. The third umpire adjudged Kohli not out as he went back to batting and kept smiling for a while.
Well, we have no clue what transpired between the Pakistan players before they went in for this review. Pakistan was up against Australia at the Melbourne Cricket Ground for the boxing day test in late 2016. The visitors batted first and scored 443 runs. Australia sent in David Warner and Matt Renshaw to open the innings while Mohammad Amir was bowling at some serious pace.
In the fifth over, one ball from Amir swung past Warner and landed on Sarfaraz Ahmed’s glove. There was an appeal from behind. The commentator without the replay said that Warner might not hit that ball at all. However, Sarfaraz and the couple slips fielders convinced captain Misbah-ul-Haq that they had heard something. Thinking that Warner might have edged the ball, Misbah went ahead and called for a review.
However, the replay showed that the ball had missed by fair amount distance. In fact, the bat was no way near in the path of the ball. Pakistan lost a review and the commentator on air jokingly said, “Someone clearly lost Misbah’s faith.”
3. Kane Williamson
Kane Williamson has had a love-hate relationship with the DRS calls. During a Test match against Pakistan in Seddon Park, Hamilton in 2016, the Kiwi skipper had a brain-fade moment.
Azhar Ali was facing quite a quick spell from Matt Henry and was finding it difficult. One ball from Henry was short and Ali ducked it. However, the ball fizzed past Ali’s shoulders. There was clearly a sound heard and the New Zealand players thought that the ball might have touched Ali’s glove on its way to the wicket-keeper, BJ Watling.
Williamson appealed and seem confident. When he looked at Watling for a hint, he seemed to have nodded his head. This prompted Williamson to go for the review. However, the replay showed that the ball was nowhere near the gloves of Azhar Ali. In fact, the Pakistan batsman had kept his hand low smartly enough to avoid any contact with the ball. The umpire ruled the decision in the favour of the on-field umpire, who had originally given it not out.
4. Virat Kohli
India was playing against England at Rajkot in 2016 when this incident took place. Alastair Cook had batted enough to frustrate the Indians on the field and was already past his century. He literally no chance to the bowlers during his innings.
However, Umesh Yadav was bowling with some serious pace manage to get one ball past his edge. The ball landed in the gloves of Wriddhiman Saha and he appealed. Captain Virat Kohli, too went ahead and appealed. However, the decision was turned down by the umpire. Without taking a lot of time for discussion, Kohli asked for a review.
However, the replays should that the ball had gone past the bat completely. In fact, there was huge daylight between the ball and the bat. There was nothing much which Kohli could have done as he smiled and went back to his fielding position. Cook kept batting as he was given not out by the third umpire.
5. Soumya Sarkar
This is probably the funniest incident among the lot. Soumya Sarkar was batting with some great confidence as Bangladesh were set a target of 457 runs in the fourth innings against Sri Lanka at Galle. Sarkar was batting on 53 from 48 balls when a gentle slower ball from Asela Gunaratne went past him and dislodged his stumps.
The umpire straight away went gave him out. But, Sarkar thought that the umpire had given him out caught behind. He decided to take a review. All this while, he didn’t know that he was actually bowled and Sri Lankan players were celebrating for that. The home team stood there in a hurdle and kept laughing while a confused Sarkar didn’t want to leave his ground.
Finally, the umpires intervened and Sarkar walked off the field. This was probably the only time in history when a batsman had asked for a DRS after being bowled.
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