Australia news

Clarke claims DRS 'distorts the game'

Daniel Brettig

November 11, 2013

Comments: 143 | Text size: A | A

Michael Clarke at the release of his book, The Ashes Diary, Sydney, November 11, 2013
Michael Clarke vented his feelings about DRS in his Ashes diary as Australia slipped to defeat © Associated Press

Australia's captain Michael Clarke has questioned the wisdom of the referral system for disputed verdicts, stating that its use is distorting the actions of the umpires as well as the players, and admitting he would prefer the DRS to be thrown out entirely if its consistency does not improve.

Clarke has also declared he does not wish to see Hot Spot return to the array of technological tools for third umpires until its reliability can be improved beyond the level seen during the previous Ashes series.

Tackling the issues surrounding the DRS in The Ashes Diary, his account of the Test matches in England, Clarke said that the introduction of referrals had created an unsavoury tactical and mental battle in addition to those traditionally fought between bat and ball - as glimpsed by Stuart Broad's infamous reprieve at Trent Bridge.

"The referral system - where captains have two unsuccessful referrals at their disposal - can distort the process," Clarke wrote. "I don't like the tactics involved, where umpires and the teams know how many referrals are left, and change their decisions accordingly. It should be consistent for all players."

Clarke chose as his example the most controversial moment of the Ashes series when Stuart Broad edged Ashton Agar to slip, via the gloves of wicketkeeper Brad Haddin, but chose not to walk and the DRS regulations allowed him to remain at the crease even though the nick was abundantly clear to everybody but the standing umpire Aleem Dar.

"The ultimate problem with the Broad 'dismissal' in Nottingham wasn't that he didn't walk, or that the umpire had made an error - it was that the complicated DRS rules meant the third umpire didn't have the opportunity to overrule the on-field decision."

The wider principle Clarke has argued for is that if technology could prove that a batsman was out, then he should be made to go, irrespective of the initial decision or the number of referrals available to the fielding team. "I believe that if it's clearly shown that the batsman hit the ball and he was caught, then the technology should be used to ensure he is out," he wrote. "If he's hit in front of the wickets and the technology shows he is lbw, he should be out, regardless of how many referrals remain.

"As a captain, I'd just like the technology to be used to make more correct decisions, without all the complications of how many referrals remain or don't remain. There shouldn't be a numerical limit. If this means passing referrals back into the hands of the three umpires, on and off the field, then so be it. My final word on the matter - if technology, and the use of technology by the umpires, continues to be as inconsistent as it has been in this series [in England], I would rather it is not used at all."

Hot Spot appears to have been shelved for the forthcoming series, and Clarke said he would not appreciate its return until the technology improved in its ability to deliver consistent results. "My opinion is that if the technology isn't perfect, it shouldn't be used at all," he wrote. "The inventor and owner of Hot Spot [Warren Brennan] came out and admitted it doesn't pick up all nicks. Ok, that's fine: Hot Spot should not be used until it is more reliable.

"Once the technology has been tested and is shown to be correct, then the ICC should rule that every team has to use it. We should have the same rule for everyone."

Since Clarke's thoughts were penned, the ICC has introduced a "top-up" of a maximum of two additional reviews for each side after 80 overs.

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here

RSS Feeds: Daniel Brettig

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by JG2704 on (November 14, 2013, 10:17 GMT)

I see this article agrees with Clarke too - being that all 3 featured comms are agreeing with Clarke. A shame one or 2 of the comms who disagree with Clarke weren't featured comms - for a bit of balance

Posted by UmpirezCall on (November 14, 2013, 1:26 GMT)

@Agnihothra: Going by that logic we'd have to get rid of all the umpires as well!! If the technology improves decision making, of course we should use it.

Posted by Agnihothra on (November 13, 2013, 10:01 GMT)

"My opinion is that if the technology isn't perfect, it shouldn't be used at all,"

AND every body criticises the BCCI................

Posted by TheRedLeb on (November 13, 2013, 9:31 GMT)

Clarke is quoted as saying "The ultimate problem with the Broad 'dismissal' in Nottingham wasn't that he didn't walk" ... So those posts referring to previous batsmen not walking and Cpts giving instructions not to walk hold no weight in this discussion Clarke at no point has said Broad should have walked.

All he has said is that the system is flawed in that he was unable to review it and the third umpire was powerless to overrule the on field umpires decision when it was clearly wrong. All he wants and I agree is a system that either eliminates all bad decisions or eliminates none of them and you take the good with the bad and hope that over a course of a Test or series they even out.

As it stands I think the system is skewing "luck" rather than levelling out, like umpires are humans so are the players and they are being punished if what they felt they saw is proven wrong by tech in many instances the margins are minute seems a team shouldn't be punished for erring

Posted by   on (November 13, 2013, 7:58 GMT)

The problem is that you can't give teams unlimited reviews, or even put it all in the hands of the umpires for the same reason; it would slow the game up too much! Umpires would review everything just in case they made a mistake, and captains would review everything just in case a ball was actually a wicket. Also batsmen would review every time they got out. The fact is that DRS is better than the naked eye, no matter how well trained, and the system of reviews, with additional reviews after 80 overs is about the best that we have at the moment. Imagine the tedious nature of the alternatives, or the dissatisfaction of going back to no DRS....No thank you.

Posted by Kaka13 on (November 13, 2013, 6:43 GMT)

Due to one incident of Broad, Clark wants to dump DRS, Symonds did not walk when he had very healthy edge and Australia was in deep trouble. When India opposed DRS all sais arrogance but when technology is not proven u can not apply. We need to see how it can help on ground umpire but ultimately on filed umpire should take a final call until HE refers to third umpire.

Posted by   on (November 13, 2013, 5:58 GMT)

We keep hearing about Broad not walking in the ashes series lets not forget about the series against India when Symonds nor Hussey walked when they nicked the ball at the Sydney Test a few years ago and here we see the Australians complaining about Broad not walking which captain instructed his batsman not to walk funny when it happens to the aust team when the BCCI did not want the DRS every one complained but these same people are now against the DRS

Posted by gdalvi on (November 13, 2013, 5:35 GMT)

One problem people fail to understand is that several things are interconnected here. If technology is not very close to 100% accurate (>99.9%)- then you are reviewing not based on what you know is true, but gambling on whether tech will confirm what you saw. A keeper might actually see and hear the nick - ask for review and still lose it - because tech is not accurate. Unless tech is >99.9% accurate, it does not make sense to limit number of reviews.

Posted by mican on (November 13, 2013, 3:10 GMT)

There is only one other person to blame for the Broad dec'n apart from Dar: Michael Clarke. If he didn't squander his referrals so stupidly he would have had opportunity to appeal and retain his referral rights.

I like referrals being the responsibility of the players. Clarke is effectively arguing for unlimited appeals or placing them in the hands of the umpire. Well that would just recreate the type of behaviour the DRS has effectively stopped such as players appealing every other ball and pressuring the umps. When they make the inevitable mistake we will see the old rancour and threats return.

Leave it with the players. Let them bear the pressure. When a mistake is made then blame will be left where it should be: The players themselves.

Posted by   on (November 13, 2013, 1:36 GMT)

Its not that the BCCI does not want reviews. It is just that they want better decisions. The 'Howlers' that are still pervading Tests can still be reduced if the Umpires use technology available to make correct decisions, the way they did before the introduction of DRS. The only change is that they can confirm with a 3rd Umpire if the decision they are about to give is right or wrong, similar to asking the 3rd Umpire whether or not a batsman was in or out in a stumping or run out.

Posted by Tolaha on (November 13, 2013, 1:29 GMT)

To all those consistently parroting that BCCI is against technology, no its not! You can hate BCCI for all I care, but atleast hate it for the right reasons!

As for the rest of the boards having no issues with DRS (until recently), why would they when it's the BCCI that would indirectly end up having to fund ICC for those shiny new toys, for all those boards that cannot afford them?

BTW my opinion on this matter is to have a URS than a DRS, with each umpire having a marks sheet, add up a point for every correct decision while deduct a fraction if its done using URS. It sounds silly but it's probably better than gambling (DRS) or an unfettered usage of URS!

Posted by Insult_2_Injury on (November 13, 2013, 0:28 GMT)

Big_Maxy_Walker - I disagree that DRS (in its current format) is better than making decisions based on someone seeing something once at full speed. Umpires are given training and their experience is worth more than a computer simulation that had medium pace balls turning square, during the Pommy series. You can't tell me that Rieffel, Tucker, Wilson, etc who actually bowled can't judge an LBW. The umpires aren't overturned if DRS technology says the ball would hit half a stump, because the technology has an error tolerance greater than half a stump. Current technology cant even determine a bump ball catch. That's not good enough as a review! I'll never forget the training I received 30 years ago. It was simple. 'Nine times out of ten, the first decision you come to is right'. Of course umpires will make mistakes, but get reliable technology that will be available from the ICC to every umpire in an International to allow them to change howlers, then it'll be an improvement.

Posted by Insult_2_Injury on (November 12, 2013, 23:52 GMT)

At least Clarke is putting the onus where it should be, concerning the Broad 'dismissal'. The whole issue revolves around the umpiring standard and the poor set up regulations for the DRS. Broad just happened to be the player involved. The whole 'top up' idea is just adding another life buoy to an overcrowded ship which already has a huge hole in the hull. Give the DRS exclusively to the umpire or scrap it and allow players records to stand beside past players for real comparison. Allow the umpires to assist each other with technology to improve their standard and get rid of the howlers like Broads' to bring back an element of integrity to the umpiring profession. It's not good enough to just say we use neutral umpires - we need the most competent and that means men/women who are big enough to ask for assistance if they aren't sure. The technology should be that assistance, not a tool for the players to have the final say on their own dismissal.

Posted by Punters_Mate on (November 12, 2013, 23:19 GMT)

Remove the referrals and let it become part of the appeal process. Already teams can be fined for frivolous appeals and the same principle can apply. If we truly want to get rid of the howlers and the tactical use of DRS place it with the umpires not players

Posted by Adoh on (November 12, 2013, 20:28 GMT)

The criteria on which to judge the success of the DRS is the minimisation of the so called 'Howler' in terms of umpiring decisions. It would be incorrect to state that the 'howler' has been eliminated, however, it would be correct to state that many 'howlers' have been corrected. Objectively speaking, and based upon the criteria for the introduction of the system, this would mean the system has met its objective by minimising the occurrences of the 'howler'. 'Howlers' will still happen from time to time, but many will be corrected and therefore the games using DRS will have fairer outcomes. I am more than satisfied with this. Obviously the BCCI and fan boys don't want fairer outcomes.

Posted by JG2704 on (November 12, 2013, 18:14 GMT)

Still say that DRS is by and large fine if policed properly.For me - as others have touched on already - referrals can be speculative.If youre a gambler and it can pay off but if you gamble these referrals and they don't pay off then the chances are you'll get a situation where you have a nailed on decision going against you as happened with Clarke. Clarke is talking about tactical reviews (aka gambles) and he seems happy to gamble but not so happy when it goes against him.Is it because he doesn't want any blame attached to himself for wasting reviews?.I believe his mate (depending on which day it is) Warne could teach him about gambling - the poker expert he is now. And re the crucial Haddin review in the 1st test , I don't think I'm alone in suggesting that Eng were gambling and that had that been early in the inns it would not have been referred.I think it also happened against Broad when he had a plumb lbw get turned down with Eng having no reviews so it works both ways

Posted by JG2704 on (November 12, 2013, 18:10 GMT)

@Tyrion-and-Tywin on (November 12, 2013, 4:45 GMT) I agree with all your points except that India are still wrong re DRS and DRS is still fine - although I disagree with reviews being replenished after 100 overs. In all the series in 2012 and the 2 prior to Ashes in 2013 (that Eng have been involved in) I don't recall anything like the controversy re DRS. The Broad decision was woeful but Clarke can only have himself to blame for not having a review left up his sleeve for which he seems to be in denial over. I'd say the other DRS controversies in the Ashes series were due to how the 3rd umpire was interpreting the system.

Posted by   on (November 12, 2013, 17:35 GMT)

I dont think this is as complicated as the ICC is making it seem. Allow only one referral. That way, the team will use it only for howlers. Anything more than one referral will lead to teams using DRS as a strategic tool, which is not what it is intended for.

Posted by shane-oh on (November 12, 2013, 16:12 GMT)

@yoohoo - so, just to be clear, you're saying that we don't get more correct decisions because of the DRS?

Posted by dyson85 on (November 12, 2013, 15:18 GMT)

This DRS "top up" after 80 overs is just another tail chasing measure that opens up the opportunity for further controversy. It says "by the time 80 overs are bowled it can be reasonably expected that a team will have used all of its referrals". So what happens if Broad nicks one to first slip and isn't given out in the 79th over of the innings? All the referrals are gone so the howler stands, but one over later the captain has regained his ability to review a decision. RIDICULOUS.

Posted by Thomas_Ratnam on (November 12, 2013, 15:04 GMT)

The last sentence in my post should read: They should leave those decisions to the experts and refrain from coercion in any form.

Posted by yoohoo on (November 12, 2013, 15:04 GMT)

I think there is a very simple implementation of DRS that should be considered.

- No limitations on reviews requested by players - Any review can result in 'decision overturned' (Red light), 'Not enough evidence to say either way' (yellow light) and 'decision retained' (green light). - If there is a 'green light' (i.e. the a player asking for review without being sure of a mistake), then they team that made the review should be docked '10 runs'. - Atleast until the hawkeye and hotspot tech is improved, third umpire should only use slow-mo.

This will ensure players ask for reviews only when they are sure of a howler, and those can typically be caught in slow-mo.

Posted by yoohoo on (November 12, 2013, 14:56 GMT)

@shane-oh - Oh lord of self thinking tribe, we bow to you for we must have no original thoughts since we disagree with you !!

We have been calling DRS a gimmick long before it was fashionable to do so. There is no objective thinking in DRS supporters, just some utopian ideals which translate very badly to reality.

Posted by ProdigyA on (November 12, 2013, 14:52 GMT)

@Arto - u hit the nail on the heat. Give all the possible technology to the third umpire and have the on-field umpires refer any and all reviews to the third umpire, which they are not sure of just lile for run outs and no balls.

Posted by Thomas_Ratnam on (November 12, 2013, 14:29 GMT)

It is fine for cricketers to discuss and suggest improvements of rules and playing conditions that have a bearing on fair play and on field strategies. Therefore limiting referrals by numbers may not be ideal. On the other hand Clarke, Dhoni and BCCI all want a perfect system. Obviously they are not informed well enough about systems, reliability and validity which drive accuracy. They should leave those decisions to experts and refrain from cohesion in any form.

Posted by   on (November 12, 2013, 14:20 GMT)

I agree apart from the bit about Hotspot. If you see it as a tool to confirm that someone is out/not out, then it doesn't work. It can only confirm that someone has hit the ball, not that they haven't. If the ICC were willing to use it as only that, I think it has a place in the upcoming series. They can't use a lack of white to change a decision to "he didn't hit it", but the part that is proven (white spot means it was hit) should still remain.

Posted by Jagger on (November 12, 2013, 13:40 GMT)

Too much faith has been put into the DRS. It is a gimmick. Umpire reviews have promised us the world and delivered us bananas.

Posted by   on (November 12, 2013, 13:31 GMT)

I fully agree with Michael Clarke that the technology shoud be used at all times to make decisions, especially when a dispute like 'the Broad Issue' matter arises. It certainly makes common sense

Posted by shane-oh on (November 12, 2013, 12:28 GMT)

@patronpedru - no, you celebrate too early. The overwhelming majority of cricket fans and players around the world know that is is untenable to continue to live in the dark ages, and strongly support the use of technology. The BCCI is virtually alone on this issue, notwithstanding the occasional voice of support when someone like Clarke realises he didn't use the system very well.

I'm really interested to see what happens when the BCCI eventually ends its tantrum - I feel that all the strident Indian fans out there who are currently so opposed to the DRS will suddenly become supporters of the system. That, in itself, will be an interesting thing to observe. I, for one, will stick to thinking for myself.

Posted by patronpedru on (November 12, 2013, 12:06 GMT)

So BCCI made all the sense in the world when it refused the use of DRS in its setup. It is simple logic though, if a product is defective, why buy it. Such a pity the rest of cricket world couldnt stand with them on this matter. Way to BCCI..

Posted by wibblewibble on (November 12, 2013, 12:01 GMT)

"The inventor and owner of Hot Spot [Warren Brennan] came out and admitted it doesn't pick up all nicks. Ok, that's fine: Hot Spot should not be used until it is more reliable."

I really do not understand this argument. If you are given out LBW, hot spot can - sometimes - clearly show that you did hit the ball, even if no deviation is clearly visible. It doesn't matter that it does not provide absolute proof in all circumstances, it provides absolute proof in many circumstances and for that reason it should be retained.

Of course, if it does not show absolute proof in a particular review, then hotspot must be ignored for the purposes of that review. Absence of a hot spot mark does not mean you did not hit it.

Posted by   on (November 12, 2013, 11:54 GMT)

What I don´t understand is why can´t the umpires be the sole arbitors of reviews - just like they refer runouts & stumpings to the 3rd umpire. Instead of captains or batsmen deciding whether to review a decision based upon the tactics/strategy in play, why not let the umpire decide whether he wants it checked by the 3rd umpire.

I´m not naive enough to not realise that most likely the majority of decisions will be referred by the on-field umpire as they won´t want to risk looking like a fool, but we already have a similar situation when the on-field umpie´s check for no-balls so this shouldn´t become a problem.

Posted by   on (November 12, 2013, 11:37 GMT)

Ok I have something to say 1 or 2 reviews should not be given to a team in a innnings instead of it third umpire should be involved in decision making process.Let's say a player is given out LBW onfield but he thinks he hit with bat first so now he can move towards the third umpire region and signals for checking and third umpire can get involved so is for the fielding team.This releases pressure on on-field umpire.And another thing is onfield umpire is not sure of the decision he is about to give he can point towards third umpire as for run outs.

Posted by Raahi_R on (November 12, 2013, 11:33 GMT)

I don't agree with Michael Clarke. As a lover of cricket; I would like the right decision to be made as much as possible irrespective of who is playing. Howlers were made before the introduction of DRS. The quality of umpiring has gone up leaps and bounds because of DRS. I'm sure this is because that no umpire would like to be proven wrong by a computer simulated model. As much technology should be used to get the most accurate result. If there is not enough evidence then the decision should stay with the on field umpire. Things that are needed are specialist 3rd umpires and the removal of using only neutral umpires. If every claim is reviewed by the 3rd umpire then it would waste time. There would not be any need for on field umpires. Let the umpires watch the whole match on a 56" flat screen from a room. As things stand now; the team that gets the best decisions using DRS supports it and those that don't will complain. I see DRS as an additional use of cricket tactics.

Posted by jackiethepen on (November 12, 2013, 11:23 GMT)

There is nothing 'incorrect' about Hot Spot. There is an awful lot of scientific ignorance in the cricketing fraternity which is quite ludicrous. Hot spot shows the contact between bat and ball when there is sufficient friction to be spotted by infra-red cameras. That doesn't lie. What the technology might not show to the human eye is the very faintest of touches. If the contact is so faint that it leaves no mark then to give the batsman out is a bit dubious anyway. Clarke is just trying to excuse his own dismal use of the technology. He should do some homework on it before giving his opinions. As for the Indians they have always relied on partiality allied with strident criticism of the umpires when things go against them. Batsmen play mind games and not only Stuart Broad. The irony is that if Clarke had been wiser in his use of technology then he could have challenged the decision re. Broad. He's not going to admit that however in the new Lehmann era.

Posted by cnksnk on (November 12, 2013, 11:10 GMT)

The biggest issue of the DRS is that the cricket boards do not take responsibility for the technology, both hardware and running cost. It is rediculous that the broadcasters decide on the availability of DRS. In the current Ashes series there will be no hot spot because the broad casters do not want to fund it and neither does CA. What happens when some of the less afluent nations play, who will fund DRS in the forth coming NZ vs Wi series. Poorly thought through by ICC. There is no free lunch.

Posted by JG2704 on (November 12, 2013, 11:03 GMT)

I'd ike folk to read the comment made by

inswing on (November 11, 2013, 20:02 GMT)

While I would stick with 2 reviews for the fielding side , I'm struggling to find big flaws in his/her idea

Posted by JG2704 on (November 12, 2013, 10:59 GMT)

@Tyrion-and-Tywin on (November 12, 2013, 4:45 GMT) I agree with all your points except that India are still wrong re DRS and DRS is still fine - although I disagree with reviews being replenished after 100 overs. In all the series in 2012 and the 2 prior to Ashes in 2013 (that Eng have been involved in) I don't recall anything like the controversy re DRS. The Broad decision was woeful but Clarke can only have himself to blame for not having a review left up his sleeve for which he seems to be in denial over. I'd say the other DRS controversies in the Ashes series were due to how the 3rd umpire was interpreting the system

Posted by JG2704 on (November 12, 2013, 10:58 GMT)

@drinks.break on (November 12, 2013, 6:59 GMT) I still say a possible grey area is where does a marginal decision (ie Haddin) become an obvious one (ie Broad)? I personally don't see anything complicated about the referral system. Each team has an allocation of 2 unsuccessful reviews and if one team uses 2 up for non howlers and then does not have the review in place for the howler then the captain has to look at himself for gambling or wasting the reviews. I see Clarke trying to deflect his part of the blame here

Posted by   on (November 12, 2013, 9:32 GMT)

Clarke spoke true. If there is DRS system, make sure it is used correctly. Nothing wrong in using technology, but use it without including limitations. Otherwise scrap it off altogether.

Now, some people here understood it wrong. Clarke is not against the DRS. He's against the limitations of the review system. His intention behind saying, "I would rather it is not used at all" is to put pressure on ICC to scrap off the limitations. Not the DRS.

To end with an example from Cinema (as I'm an aspiring filmmaker) - When sound was first introduced into cinema, it's imperfections caused a lot of trouble. But despite the imperfections they continued with it and we all now have a wonderful auditory experience in the theaters. DRS is a good thing and it's necessary to persist with it, improvise it rather than abandon it.

Posted by drinks.break on (November 12, 2013, 9:31 GMT)

@Bishop, now you seem to have read neither the article nor my argument with landl47!

What's NOT at issue in our argument is whether the DRS system at present is good or not (we both agree - along with Clarke - that it's not). What's at issue is what Clarke's particular beef with DRS is, and therefore whether the Haddin dismissal is relevant to it, and whether we should read a grubby self-protectiveness into Clarke's motives.

I maintain, on the basis of the text of the article, that Clarke's beef has to do with a change in focus and mood in the game itself which the (fairly arbitrary) rules in the system foster, and hence the Broad dismissal is relevant, but the Haddin one is not. There were other examples Clarke could have used (eg, the angst caused by edges being given out without showing up on hotspot), but I don't believe the Haddin one is in the same category. Landl47 begs to differ.

Posted by shane-oh on (November 12, 2013, 9:28 GMT)

Aussie_prk - yeah, it is funny that Clarke echoes the BCCI view, just as he is looking to promote a cricketing book to the cricket world...

Actually, Clarke making this statement doesn't 'prove that the players in the ground do not believe in DRS'. It proves that Michael Clarke says he doesn't, no more than that.

Also, to claim that the DRS has proven a failure time and time again flies in the face of reality. Are you suggesting there haven't been many, many incorrect decisions overturned, and a few (already incorrect) decisions that haven't been? How can this possibly qualify as a failure? Once again we come up against the same inability to reason on the the topic, and the ludicrous suggestion that if some of the decisions remain wrong (mostly through misuse of the system by players/captains), then this somehow renders the entire system worthless.

Posted by satishchandar on (November 12, 2013, 9:28 GMT)

I am not sure whether each and every decision is refered will make things easier.. There will be loads of appeals made every day and you never know which is a howler. If at all, leave it to players with unlimited reviews or 5 reviews per innings.. And, the remaining will be carried over to next innings..

How come each and every decision go to third umpire? 5 minutes for every decision would kill the game.. May be, attract more sponsors.. It should be the player who should know that it is a howler first time.. Let them be the deciders..

To make the DRS uniform, throw out the expensive incorrect technologies and bring in on the slow mo replays, use pitch map.. Honestly this would remove the howlers - for which DRS is designed rather than confusing with marginal decisions. As with current stuff, move on with the umpire for marginal decisions..

Posted by kunderan on (November 12, 2013, 9:19 GMT)

So finally the world at lare is realising that the DRS is not as good as it should be. Hopefully people will now accept the wisdom of people like Sachin and Dhoni who insisted on the same thing that Pup is now asking for i.e. consistency and improved accuracy!

BCCI was unfairly accused of using it's clout and being a bully when they were merely backing their players who knew what they were talking about!

When things against them all teams moan about the same DRS. Have a thought for the poor umpires. I hate to see an umpire being shown in bad light without the benefit of the numerous replays that our 'experts' have before calling a decision 'rubbish'. Hawkeye's prediction of deviation and bounce seems quite different to what it appears to the naked eye, even on replays.

I feel the decision should be totally left to the umpires when they want to see the replays (just like close boundary line saves and catches and run outs and stumpings to name a few).

Posted by Aussie_prk on (November 12, 2013, 9:06 GMT)

Finally Clarke echoes the BCCI view. It's funny that when it's BCCI then entire western world combines their voices against them but this article clearly proves that the players in the ground do not believe in DRS which has time and again proven to be a failure. As a player it cannot be more frustrating to have two mistakes over the same decision (broad given not out by umpire and DRS). I am a strong believer of technology but ICC have completely failed to use it the right way. If the team runs our of reviews like Aus did during the Broad incident then essentially then despite of knowing the man was out none of the officials could do anything, the rules and the officials failed the game that day. Take DRS out of players and give that power to the 3rd umpire who should make decisions when needed, via TV review. That would be a much better way of using the technology which in itself needs a fair bit of improvement..

Posted by   on (November 12, 2013, 8:46 GMT)

I remember 2008 series when India visited Australia. India faces the similar issues then but not againts DRS but againts Umpire. And Stuart board act very well resembles to Andre symonds then(at SCG. Every team has to face such situations..

Posted by vivkr on (November 12, 2013, 8:45 GMT)

Good to see an Aussie captain take a sensible stand on this issue. Indeed, one expects a cricketer to walk when he knows he is out. Of course, almost nobody does it anymore. As for the umpires, if you want to support them, then don't use half-measures. Either allow the third umpire full power to overrule a wrong decision or shelf DRS, third umpire referral etc.

There is nothing that disgraces an umpire so much as the constant post-match bickering about poor umpiring. These guys are also human, even the great Steve Buckner got decisions wrong at times. If we do nothing, then we'll pretty soon have the same situation we have in football where the pig-headed officials of the various FAs let the poor referee be massacred in post-match interviews given out by managers.

Posted by winner2008 on (November 12, 2013, 8:13 GMT)

Its very hard to swallow if a player got out in a wrong decision which affects both teams, umpires and fans. Umpires are also human and they will also have bad day like players and a small lose of concentration may cause big damage. Technology might have its own disadvantage, but it is always above the human level. We should support DRS despite their failure in very difficult decisions. All prefer to avoid controversy over easy decision since it can ruin the overall match. In my concept, I would like put forward another concept. Why shouldn't we give INFINITE number of referrals with some runs PENALTY? Possibly the teams that are losing referral should also loose 5 to 10 runs per referrals whether they are batting or bowling(-/+ runs). Isn't it interesting?? It will definitely prevent abusing referrals(like sehwag did in last WC). It would have definitely helped Clarke in broad decision. In crucial conditions(say 30 runs needed to win or 5 overs left in chases),give a free referral!

Posted by Bishop on (November 12, 2013, 8:01 GMT)

@drinks break... I think he read it right. The reason Haddins dismissal didn't leave a bad taste in the mouth was because Cook used the drs for what it was intended...correcting the howlers. Now I'm not a drs fan by any means, but I don't see that Clarke can fault the system for not overturning the Broad decision - the *system* was quite able to do so, but Clarke had squandered his reviews on line ball decisions. Saying that the drs has introduced a tactical and mental battle is absurd...Clarke and captains like him are introducing this tactical aspect by gambling on close decisions, rather than using the drs for its intended purpose.

Posted by shane-oh on (November 12, 2013, 7:36 GMT)

@AndrewFVL - apologies. I thought you were making a reference to some abstract concept about defining nicks. You make a fair point, there should be rules around what constitutes enough doubt and what doesn't. That explanation made things much clearer.

Posted by Saurusii on (November 12, 2013, 7:23 GMT)

@TheOnlyEmperor: Remember the intent of DRS. As the technology is not perfect, the idea is not to get perfect decisions, but only to correct the "howlers" from the umpires, thereby still maintaining the supremacy of the umpires to run the game. Effectively, the benefit of the doubt is given to the umpires even though they still shoudl give the benefit of the doubt to the batsmen.

I have no problem with that. The teams and captains need to take that into account when deceiding whether or not to challenge the umpires' decisions.

Posted by itisme on (November 12, 2013, 7:01 GMT)

ha ha ha. where are the BCCI bashers. I am not a fan of BCCI (in fact I really do not like the attitude of its members at all) but on this issue I do agree to some extent with the BCCI. DRS is a sham and it should be scrapped altogether. The only thing it may be used for is to determine if there is a snick or if the catch has been taken cleanly. Using it for lbw from balltracking (so called Hawk eye) is absolutely ridiculous. Balltracking is only a computer program which does not take into the ground realities at all, the humidity, the wind speed and direction, the pitch (which is not uniform) and many other things.

Posted by drinks.break on (November 12, 2013, 6:59 GMT)

@landl47, I think you need to read the article again:

"The ultimate problem with the Broad 'dismissal' in Nottingham wasn't that he didn't walk, or that the umpire had made an error - it was that the complicated DRS rules meant the third umpire didn't have the opportunity to overrule the on-field decision."

Clarke specifically identifies that his argument isn't about whether or not a batsman 'fesses up - in fact, the implication of the article is that he would be perfectly happy for every batsman to stand his ground every time.

What riles him is "that the introduction of referrals had created an unsavoury tactical and mental battle in addition to those traditionally fought between bat and ball".

There was no unsavoury after-taste to Haddin's dismissal, but there certainly was to Broad's. Hence, Haddin's dismissal is irrelevant to Clarke's case; Broad's is not.

It has nothing to do with "making him and Haddin look bad", or whatever other conspiracy theory might be thrown up.

Posted by heathrf1974 on (November 12, 2013, 6:57 GMT)

@The Sachin_The_Greatest I agree with your comments more money should be contributed to those boards including bangladesh to focus on test cricket. Australia (my country) should also play more Test matches against these sides in Test cricket.

Posted by   on (November 12, 2013, 6:18 GMT)

The technology review has added an entertaining aspect to the game not to mention an enhanced sense that more correct decisions are being made. When it is not in play, all the technology does is to spotlight correct or incorrect umpiring decisions. What is the point of that? Modern cricket should not be a game of chance. Waiting for decision confirmations is never boring. Start the day's play earlier if necessary.

Posted by venkatesh018 on (November 12, 2013, 5:56 GMT)

Everybody who says that DRS is a sham should just look at the decisions made by the on-field umpires at Eden Gardens' last week. Those decisions were a disgrace and the Kolkata Test was the perfect advert for the need for DRS.

Posted by Maelstromoracle on (November 12, 2013, 5:55 GMT)

If anyone can remember the ridiculous "Super Test" in 2005, that's exactly what the umpires had. They could refer decisions to check for things at their discretion, not at the behest of players.

It's a much more respectful way of dealing with these things and will restore trust in the umpires.

Posted by TheOnlyEmperor on (November 12, 2013, 5:55 GMT)

In it's pursuit for use of technology in decision making, the ICC has made the use of commonsense redundant. There's no surprise therefore at the mess that has been created in cricket. The DRS issue has 2 aspects, one where the technology itself is inadequate and there are no guidelines that the umpire use commonsense when the inadequacy is obvious on review. The second aspect concerns the way the decision making system is based. How on earth can one ball that is bowled can have 2 possible outcomes? Either it is OUT or NOT OUT. The outcome (final decision) cannot swing BASED on the on field umpire's INITIAL verdict. For eg, if an umpire's initial verdict is Out for a marginal decision, then the final verdict is usually Out. Likewise, if for the same ball, if the initial verdict is Not Out, then the final verdict for a marginal decision is usually Not Out. That is the glaring and definitely unacceptable. Can't anybody else see this?

Posted by disco_bob on (November 12, 2013, 5:42 GMT)

How about each side get between 1 and 4 referrals per innings. The actual number is known only by the umpires and is decided randomly after the toss. This admittedly odd suggestion would take care of Clarke's concerns about tactical use to some degree.

Posted by landl47 on (November 12, 2013, 5:37 GMT)

@drinks.break: The best case Clarke could make is to compare a situation in which a wrong decision was corrected with one in which it wasn't. As I said in my post, I am in agreement that the three umpires make all decisions. By only giving half the story, Clarke undermines his own case. It provides fuel for those who say the review system should be scrapped. It's essential to ensure that people realize that reviewing calls that might be bad does work.

By not giving the example of where the review system worked (because it makes him and Haddin look bad) he's not providing the best justification for his case. The reason that particular example is so important is that Haddin admitted he knew he had nicked it. Rarely is there a case where a batsman (or bowler or fielder) 'fesses up that a decision was wrong and he knew it was wrong. Both Broad and Haddin admitted it, yet the outcomes were different. That's the best argument for Clarke's case.

Posted by Sachin_The_Greatest on (November 12, 2013, 5:35 GMT)

We need to ask questions to ourselves, Why DRS was originally invented? To Eliminate Howlers.

Next question is what is howler? Haddin's Original dismissal, was it a howler? or Broad's original dismissal, was it a howler.

by no means Haddin's original dismissal was correct, but was it a howler? not so (IMO) but Broad's original dismissal was definitely a howler.

now, did we need DRS(Hotspot/ Ball tracking) to arrive at a decision?, again ans is No. we just needed a better Snicko & in broad's case a simple slo mo action replay was enough.

While i do agree that no Technology is 100% correct but the machine which we use are not 97%, those products achieve (most of it) six sigma standards i.e. 99.99967%

Also if i get correct decision from 94% to 97% (which is definitely a better numbers) but at what cost $50000 a day? i would like to see these monies going to boards like zimbabwe, srilanka , west indies & pakistan so that they can focus on Test Cricket & not on ODIS & T20s.

Posted by   on (November 12, 2013, 5:34 GMT)

Routine umpire reviews will come - the sooner the better.

Maybe as an interim improvement, a player LBW referral should not be taken away from the allowable number of referrals if the "wrong" 50% of the ball is shown to hit a wicket even though umpires original decision still stands.

Posted by Tyrion-and-Tywin on (November 12, 2013, 4:45 GMT)

My 2 cents worth:

1) DRS is like reverse swing of the 1990s. When Pakistan did reverse swing, they were 'wrong', when others started doing it , it was 'right'. When India was against DRS, it was an uncouth and loud bully. When others are now against it, it will suddently start making sense to not have DRS.

2) Why is everyone unhappy about Broad not walking. Do Batsmen walk when they have a very fine nick? Is a fine nick less out than a loud nick? What nonsense is this.

3) A free reign to the umpires to use DRS? Utter nonsense!! Don't you see what has happened to the use of the 3rd umpire for runouts. Almost every runout chance is reviewed by the 3rd umpire nowadays. Cricket will become a sham!

Posted by NAYANADINI on (November 12, 2013, 4:09 GMT)

I feel drs is here to stay. If every decision is referred to the third umpire it will take a lot of time and ultimately things will become boring,imagine clarke batting for 9 hours,the opposition desperately trying to send him back to pavillion,reviewing each of the legbyes and beaten deliveries .The researches for using more fool proof technologies are going on.Those will evolve and mature with time. Everyone should understand that even the machines cant be 100pc right,all the time. Had drs not been there everyone would have voiced for it,after broad incident. Atleast drs can reduce umpiring blunders even if it misses to pick the stitch on the ball faintly kissing the bat. we can increase the number of reviews from 3 to 4 per 80 overs. I felt clarke was echoing indian voices on reading the article(though i respect that country). From what comments i see here,most people here are using the drs topic as an opportunity to take a ride on the nations they have a grudge on.

Posted by   on (November 12, 2013, 4:09 GMT)

BTW, BCCI has never been against technology. They have simply been against the way DRS is being used (read Srininvasan's interview that was published on this website a few months back ).

Posted by SamRoy on (November 12, 2013, 3:54 GMT)

What Clarke said is absolutely correct. DRS can be removed and umpires can be given absolute freedom to make decisions with maximum technology possible. If it requires the game to be played for half an hour longer, play the game half an hour longer.

Posted by nakihunter on (November 12, 2013, 3:18 GMT)

I agree with this but I find it so ironical. In 2008 when India condemned the DRS and refused to accept it, the Australian board & media were so critical of India. Now that Australia has felt the brunt of the problem they are suddenly repeating India's concern.

Posted by FreddyForPrimeMinister on (November 12, 2013, 3:02 GMT)

i@landl47, @Optic and @ScottStevo - agree entirely with all points raised. The new rule for two referrals every 80 overs is stupid and simply encourages even more tactical use of DRS rather than seeking to refer howlers as DRS was originally intended. The only changes to the system should be to remove the loss of a referral when overturned on an "umpire's call", plus the use of real time snicko and improvements to Hotspot. I'd also like to see the ability of the 3rd umpire to overturn a howler, regardless of any review being requested or available, provided it can be conveyed to the onfield umpire BEFORE the next ball is bowled. This will include occasions when a batsman is given (wrongly) out. With those amendments, we will still never achieve 100% accuracy but I reckon we'll get to over 99% and with far less controversy!

Posted by Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas_Atheist on (November 12, 2013, 3:00 GMT)

There's no need for expensive failed science projects for howlers. Howler is something that is obvious or should be obvious on revisiting it. A nice super slo-mo is all you need for howlers - not hot-spot or tracker. Well, the inventor admits that hot-spot doesn't pick up nicks reliably? Well then, what's he actually doing here? He should be asked to leave immediately. Stuffing failed science projects into DRS is such a shame. BCCI has always been right. The complaint is not that this technology isn't perfect. It is ridiculously unreliable and that's what opponents are complaining about. I'm not against DRS. I'm against the science projects that are included in it, masquerading as technology. The whole world knows that hot-spot and tracker are complete failures in marginal decisions. So, what can these expensive failed science projects do? Identify howlers? So, you need to spend boatloads of money to spot howlers? Seriously? Sick! Shame! Super slo-mo please.

Posted by drinks.break on (November 12, 2013, 2:41 GMT)

@landl47, how on earth does an example where the DRS worked help Clarke make his case about the failures of the DRS? The best exampe to use is surely the most obvious case whereby the DRS rules meant a wrong could not be righted. And that would be Broad AND NOT Haddin.

Posted by jmcilhinney on (November 12, 2013, 2:22 GMT)

@Optic on (November 11, 2013, 18:49 GMT), well said! Clarke is often praised for his aggressive captaincy but it comes down to the fact that he is gambler. That means that he will call for more reviews than he should and that's why he doesn't want responsibility for doing so. All teams make mistakes with DRS and England is no different but their approach is more considered. I have no doubt that, had the roles been reversed, England would not have reviewed the LBW decision against Bairstow and would therefore have had a review left for Broad. Clarke's captaincy may have lost Australia a game that they could have won there and it almost lost them the last Test too, yet still there is only praise for Clarke in that regard.

Posted by jmcilhinney on (November 12, 2013, 2:16 GMT)

Firstly, one has to wonder how much of this from Clarke was prompted by the incident involving Stuart Broad, where Australia had previously wasted a review on a hopeless LBW against Jonny Bairstow. Clarke claims that umpires are changing their decisions based on who has reviews remaining but, if that was the case, surely Aleem Dar would have given Broad out just in case and then let him review if he thought that he didn't hit it. DRS is not perfect but there is no perfect system. Remove DRS and some people won't be happy. Use DRS and some won't be happy that it's being used and some won't be happy with the implementation. Change the implementation and others won't be happy. Finally, I don't think that HotSpot was nearly as much of an issue in the last Ashes as many people like to imply. People were calling Haddin's dismissal in the first Test controversial but he clearly edged the ball and even said so himself, so any controversy is purely manufactured.

Posted by Moutarde on (November 12, 2013, 2:12 GMT)

Perhaps now that Sachin can't be out LBW to Swann, the BCCI/ICC will be happy to reintroduce DRS?

Posted by Adoh on (November 12, 2013, 2:03 GMT)

The suggestion that DRS technology should be perfect and not used unless it is, is akin to throwing out the baby with the bathwater. As a spokesperson for the Australian team I would expect Michael to have a more balanced view in acknowledging the benefits of the system as well as it's shortcomings. The benefits are that more correct decisions are made and it is unrealistic to expect the system to be foolproof as humans operate the system, and humans are not foolproof.

Posted by HatsforBats on (November 12, 2013, 1:58 GMT)

@ Optic, the Broad reference is a perfect example of what is wrong with the system. DRS was implemented to help correct obvious umpiring errors. The fact that Clarke using each of his arbitrarily assigned number of challenges allowed an obvious error to stay uncorrected makes a mockery of the current system. Why 2 referrals? Why not one for each batsman? Why not just give more control to a specially trained TV umpire who could have corrected that decision within 20 seconds? I am a fan of DRS, but I do not expect perfection with the technology. I do expect a higher standard of use of the system and more logical standard operating procedures.

Posted by DylanBrah on (November 12, 2013, 1:46 GMT)

If the fielding team reviews an LBW decision, and it is shows less than half the ball hitting the stumps, it should remain not out, but the fielding team doesn't lose a referral.

Posted by wellrounded87 on (November 12, 2013, 1:39 GMT)

Rather than be rid of Hotspot why not just say it can only be used to confirm a nick rather than confirm no nick.

There have been many a howler made that hotspot has rightly corrected. A lot of Bat-pad lbw appeal reviews benefit greatly as well as confirmation of genuine nicks.

No technology is perfect, but it is an improvement on the naked eye. I don't think hotspot should be used to rule no nick if there's reasonable evidence to suggest a nick (sound, visual evidence, deviation etc.) But it can be confirmation of a nick so why not use it?

The real reason is the money. Hotspot is expensive and the broadcasters don't want to pay.

Posted by Stup1d on (November 12, 2013, 1:37 GMT)

The issues raised by Clarke are more or less the same that Srinivasan mentioned in an interview recently, and BCCI have been raising this for a long time!

Posted by   on (November 12, 2013, 1:32 GMT)

clarke will remain captain

Posted by bobagorof on (November 12, 2013, 1:15 GMT)

The DRS was developed following an India-Australia series where the Indian team management felt several umpiring decisions went against their team. The system was implemented to remove the 'howler' - a decision that was obviously incorrect. The instance that Clarke points to, of Broad's non-dismissal, is one such instance. However, in that case, Clarke had used up two previous reviews on calls that were not obviously wrong - so I find it hard to have sympathy for him in that instance. The issue then appears to be not the system, but how captains choose to use it (ie for close calls rather than obvious mistakes). That being the case, perhaps, as someone suggested, a team could not lose a review when the reviewed decision comes back 'Umpire's Call' (ie meaning the technology shows doubt about the decision but not enough to overturn it). Or have the third umpire rule on obvious mistakes and have no player input at all.

Posted by Rowayton on (November 12, 2013, 1:11 GMT)

In his featured comment landl47 is being just as defensive as Cook. Broad is the perfect case to bring up because everybody knew it was out, including the third umpire (and probably the square leg umpire), yet it was not out because of the DRS rules. What Clarke is saying, quite rightly, is that that doesn't make much sense. And the Haddin dismissal reinforces another one of his points - about DRS in its current form affecting umpiring. Obviously I cannot read Aleem Dar's mind, but I got the distinct impression that he gave this important decision not out because he knew England had reviews left. If England had no reviews and Australia had some, he may have given it out. In effect, it appeared as though he was using the rules to refer it to the third umpire.

Posted by Barnesy4444 on (November 12, 2013, 0:59 GMT)

Nobody can tell me an umpires decision is the same regardless of how many referrals a team had left. If a bowling team had 2 referrals left the umpire is more likely to give it not out knowing they will review it.

DRS influences umpires before technology is even used.

The technology will never be perfect but it should be removed from the hands of players completely. Umpires should be able to review decisions and the 3rd umpire should be able to intervene in obvious errors.

Posted by PACERONE on (November 12, 2013, 0:36 GMT)

The "umpires call"verdict is the biggest problem.How can it be that if he had given the out call then the batsman would be out and reverse if he had called not out when it shows that the ball was hitting the stumps.the umpire can favor one team by saying not out to close calls.

Posted by Cricket_Fan_And_Analyst on (November 11, 2013, 22:48 GMT)

BTW , BCCI was never against technology per say. All these while BCCI said no to the way DRS is implemented and wanted more full proof technology.

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge on (November 11, 2013, 22:45 GMT)

No amount of monumental whinging about the last series by Clarke and co and distract anyone from the series coming up. Everyone would like to better use of the DRS, and Clarke's in the minority in even conisdering the entire system scrapped. I wonder what the title of his next book will be after the next Ashes?

Posted by JG2704 on (November 11, 2013, 22:21 GMT)

@inswing on (November 11, 2013, 20:02 GMT) Actually , that's not the worst idea in the world allthough I'd still say just 2 reviews per fielding side

Posted by JG2704 on (November 11, 2013, 22:19 GMT)

The way I see it is that Clarke's proposals will just open a new can of worms.

I always thought that one of the reasons behind DRS was to reduce excessive appealing etc as a team/player can get what he sees as an unjust decision overturned without being seen to be showing dissent by using DRS. The way I see it - with Clarke's proposals - the umpires will be under pressure to look at everything.Detractors of DRS already say it slows down the game - and this is with only 2 unsuccessful reviews per side. This will just slow the game down more. Also there is the grey area re what constitutes as an obvious bad decision

Posted by Moutarde on (November 11, 2013, 22:14 GMT)

1) Clarke doesn't like it because he can't understand what are pretty simple rules 2) If we take away all decision making power from the umpires, why have them at all - picture a game with no umpires on the field and the utter carnage that would ensure and that's what you would get if you took away all decision-making from the umpires.

Posted by ShutTheGate on (November 11, 2013, 21:46 GMT)

I agree with Clarke they shouldn't restrict the number of reviews.

Test cricket is a five day game and there is certainly enough time to check decisions if there is doubt.

Although hot spot has proven to not be 100% accurate. Why is hawk eye taken as gospel? It's a computer generated animation, I do not see how this technology can be definite.

Posted by Clive_Dunn on (November 11, 2013, 21:41 GMT)

What's complicated apart from don't waste your referrals on hopeful gambles ? The only player who appears to find that complicated is Shane Watson, but then most of us suspect Watto has left and right written on his boots to avoid potential confusion.

Posted by screamingeagle on (November 11, 2013, 21:30 GMT)

keep using the system till it becomes better? try making a dog's tail straight. inherent flaws and flawed thinking will not work out even if you keep doing it over and over again. keep it in the hands of the third ump, some guy said, so you review each decision? well the next issue will be time loss, someone getting out because the 'system' predicts the ball shaving the off? or maybe there is a micron off the stumps? DRS is not as great as people say it is. do not penalise players because the system says so.

Posted by Clavers on (November 11, 2013, 21:23 GMT)

All dismissal decisions should be reviewed using the technology. The batsmen shouldn't have to ask for it. The fielding side should automatically get several DRS referrals in each innings -- say about six. In addition, the umpires should be able to resort to the technology whenever they feel the need. After the fielding side's automatic referrals are used up, they should be entitled to request further referrals but the umpires should be entitled to say no. This is to stop a team from appealing for DRS every ball as a deliberate time-wasting tactic.

The technology should be used in tests in every instance where there is any doubt. I know this will slow down play overall, but I don't find the delays from DRS reviews to be an inordinate disruption to the game. In fact, fans find it pretty interesting to look over the crucial decisions in detail. Compared to some other sports like golf or American football the interruptions in play due to DRS are not very significant.

Posted by coldcoffee123 on (November 11, 2013, 21:20 GMT)

This is what I do not like about Clarke. Under his leadership, the focus is on anything but cricket. I just do not get it. Instead of quietly working on his own game and making sound cricketing decisions, he is always talking about "team discipline", "work culture", "technology", "dynamics", "homework", blah blah. During the recent IND-AUS ODIs, there was not even a single talk that revolved around such extraneous matters. And the focus was 100% on cricket. I do not think Clarke will remain Aussie captain in any format for long. His thinking has got messed up. I do not think he is even enjoying cricket. Captaincy has completely changed him personally. Too much pressure. That is why you should never make your best player a captain.

Posted by milepost on (November 11, 2013, 20:58 GMT)

Agree with Clarke. The game was better before DRS in my opinion and it fails to eliminate howlers. @optic I think blaming Broad's non-dismissal on Clarke is a bit weird. If anything it was the umpires error and arguably not great judgement from Broad to stand his ground. Notice I mentioned 'arguably' so as not to start this debate again! He played within the rules, end of story.

Posted by AndrewFVL on (November 11, 2013, 20:54 GMT)

@shane-o You seem to be missing my point. Let me put it this way: if there's an eighth inch of daylight between bat and ball or if there's an eight inch interference between them, the decision is clear (provided everyone agrees), but somewhere between those clear cases there MUST be a grey area, which would need some sort of freeze-action and microscopic examination to resolve - together with an agreed definition of what constitutes a 'nick'. I say there must be a grey area as things stand; but that could, in principle, be avoided with a definition of, say at least 2 millimeters impingement of ball on bat for a nick. With such a definition, perhaps hotspot could be relied on.

Posted by   on (November 11, 2013, 20:21 GMT)

The Aussis would not like DRS because excessive appeals to sway the umpire's decision in their favor. Fans hate to see wrong decisions Change game. DRS should stay.

Posted by PoundOfFlesh on (November 11, 2013, 20:17 GMT)

My biggest problem is with Umpires Call on LBW decisions. In a given match, if an umpire has ruled a batsman not out and on review Hawk eye shows umpires call, Then all future umpires call on Hawk eye should be not out for that match. I also feel 2 reviews per 80 overs is ridiculous. 2 reviews per batsman should be considered. for the batting side it should be unlimited reviews.

Posted by inswing on (November 11, 2013, 20:02 GMT)

Every 'out' decision should be automatically reviewed. It is hard for batsmen to know, for LBWs. That's why most reviews are used and wasted on LBWs. Instead, simply review every 'out'. It will not waste much time because most outs are obvious. Allow fielding sides three reviews for 'not out's and you will be done with controversies.

Posted by tamperbay on (November 11, 2013, 19:50 GMT)

Since its been decided that DRS will be used in the current series, Clarke's negative view towards it is not good for the team. He needs to look at it positively and concentrate on how to use it to his and the team's advantage as much as possible. With this negative view, its just going to make him more frustrated when he gets a review wrong. He needs to work out a good system like the England team have come up with which includes an obligatory discussion and consensus between the wicket-keeper, captain, and bowler, before deciding to review or not. eg at what stage, close to the 80 overs, should he move from being conservative with the reviews and start becoming more speculative (if he has any left that is!), and have a system for that. He should be concentrating on that and working out plans rather than being critical of current playing conditions.

I think the biggest problem with the present rules are that teams lose a review over "umpire call" verdicts. That should be changed!

Posted by legsidewide on (November 11, 2013, 19:47 GMT)

@akpy calm down, calm down. It's not dinosaurs that are going to determine the place of technology in the game. It will be forward-thinking individuals who will decide what is to be done.

Posted by TommytuckerSaffa on (November 11, 2013, 19:33 GMT)

Here we go. Enter all the BCCI fans to slate Technology and DRS to declare that life in the stoneage is good. Just to be clear, Clarke did state that technology must not be used. He debates how its being used.

Posted by intelligent_guy008 on (November 11, 2013, 19:11 GMT)

I wish ICC was clear as Clarke is. His observation in following paragraph sums it up. If a bat is out, he should be made go regardless of referrals or onfield umpire decisions.

They are just perpetuating the problem by making one silly decision over the other.

"I believe that if it's clearly shown that the batsman hit the ball and he was caught, then the technology should be used to ensure he is out," he wrote. "If he's hit in front of the wickets and the technology shows he is lbw, he should be out, regardless of how many referrals remain.

Posted by ScottStevo on (November 11, 2013, 18:54 GMT)

@Englishfan, but that won't happen, as almost all appeals will end up being referred, much in the same way as umpires can call upon technology to adjudicate run outs. If tech is there and the umpire doesn't use it and the decision is wrong, they will be crucified for it. Which is why almost all run outs are referred, even when guys are 5 feet in their crease. The same will occur if umpires are given the reins for reviewing. However, I agree with Clarke in this would at least minimise the amount of inconsistency in the decisions, ie this ludicrous notion of umpire's call, although it would slow the game down markedly. Bowlers will appeal for everything and then they will harrass (to a degree) umpires to review them to ensure. Name me one bowler who thinks any slight incident isn't a dead cert out!

Posted by Optic on (November 11, 2013, 18:49 GMT)

I'm not quite understanding the Stuart Broad reference. If Clarke had not wasted his reviews, that call would have been over turned simple as that and URDS would have been getting praised for doing what it was brought into to do, which was stop howlers. With no UDRS it would have played out exactly the same way it did.

I also don't get these people that are after perfection from a system, that's never going to happen. But what we do have is a system that gets most things right especially when used responsibly. Which is probably why Clarke has a problem with it, because he used it appallingly and has never got to grips with it.

I think once Snicko is able to be used in real time it will make the whole system all the better. Snicko with hot spot & stump mic is the perfect tool.

All these people saying it hasn't sorted the problems, what game are you watching. It has corrected literally hundreds of poor umpiring calls for the better and there has only been a handful of mistakes.

Posted by Cricketfan11111 on (November 11, 2013, 18:28 GMT)

@AndrewFVL, @shane-oh your comments show exactly what the technology makes people think and define. The simple fact is, for an on field umpire to make decision he has to see/hear the nick with his naked eye/ear. All these technologies go beyond human range and detect nicks and make the umpiring impossible.

Posted by   on (November 11, 2013, 18:09 GMT)

Start scoring some runs Mr.Clarke or Bailey will be leading Australia from next year :)

Posted by   on (November 11, 2013, 18:09 GMT)

Use DRS only for LBWs, not for nicks. Simple is that. If its a 'nicked LBW' shout then go for the sound and deflection only if clear then Ok if not then do not rule the batsman out. If its a nick, the ball dont deflect and hawkeye says its hitting stumps that should be out. I dont understand why non deviated nicks straight into pads not considered for LBWs?

Posted by shane-oh on (November 11, 2013, 18:06 GMT)

@AndrewFVL - well, either the ball and bat touch each other, or they don't. If they do, that's a nick. If they don't, it isn't. What are you struggling to get?

Posted by CodandChips on (November 11, 2013, 17:50 GMT)

The problems is that umpires might not refer howlers which the batsmen knows is out, eg inside edging an lbw. Only way of doing it is by having the 3rd umpire check it. But then there is the inconsistency- if the umpire had originally given it not out then the decision wouldn't have been reviewed (just like when no-balls are only checked following a wicket). Maybe third umpires should check every ball as the bowler walks back to his back, surely that'd be enough time to check for obvious howlers. But of course, spinners wouldn't give enough time.

On hotspot, it can still be used to prove an edge, but it can't disprove them. Surely we should still use just because it can instantly prove an edge. If nothing comes up, then go to the other technologies, such as Snicko (but it "takes too long to build"), and Hawkeye to measure deviation upon passing the edge.

Posted by AndrewFVL on (November 11, 2013, 17:36 GMT)

@shane-oh How do you define 'hits the bat' ?!

Posted by shane-oh on (November 11, 2013, 17:24 GMT)

@AndrewFVL - a nick is when the ball hits the bat.

Posted by   on (November 11, 2013, 17:22 GMT)

It's like most things, it is not perfect. It's definitely more reliable than a human that is affected by mood, pressure and hunger. The Aussies were always good at putting the pressure on umpires and from my memory they used to get the rub of the green. I think that it should up to technique rather than bluster. That's why England are now on top, and the Aussies need to adapt to the new ways.

Posted by akpy on (November 11, 2013, 17:14 GMT)

To all those who made it a personal issue painting BCCI, Indians and even kept bringing sachin into the mix, eat your heart out !! Listen to what Kallis, kp, Clarke, etc have all said after one series where they got a few rough always, India leads the way to enlightenment

Posted by SrinR on (November 11, 2013, 17:11 GMT)

The DRS was meant for correcting obvious umpiring mistakes; not for gambling. As simple as that.

Posted by shane-oh on (November 11, 2013, 17:02 GMT)

@ShanTheFanOfSachin - there isn't a need to prove that there are issues with the system - we all know this, it is clearly evident. Regardless of that, improving the decision making to some extent is better than doing nothing. Really, the opposition to the DRS makes me scratch my head in amazement, as it really is just so illogical.

Regarding your first point, I think you will find that the point being made is that these players/boards only start complaining when they have a series where they either haven't used the system well (India) or it just hasn't worked in their favour (Australia). This will happen with such a system - the point being made is these people don't complain when it works in their favour (well, we can't say that about the BCCI, because their temper tantrum is still ongoing after, what, 5 years?).

Posted by AndrewFVL on (November 11, 2013, 16:49 GMT)

What is a 'nick'? - is it anything more than 1 millimeter? - or anything more than 1 micron? - of course hot spot cannot reliably catch a 'nick' unless a 'nick' is defined!

Posted by ShanTheFanOfSachin on (November 11, 2013, 16:33 GMT)

I really do not understand when people say "BCCI opposed it because they were at receiving end of DRS. Now Clarke opposes it because AUS were at receiving end". Doesn't it prove that there is indeed problems with the system??

If technology doesn't solve the problem, them shelve it . I can easily revese the argument and say "Just because one or two teams benefit from DRS,others shouldn't be forced to use an incompetent technology" or "A wrong thing can not be justified even if it has a majority", just like BCCI can not 'decide' everything just becase they have the financial majority.

There is no way I support BCCI in whatever they do. But when it comes to DRS, knowing or unknowingly they are the on right side of arguments. Thats it

Posted by shane-oh on (November 11, 2013, 16:22 GMT)

@xtrafalgarx - really? A guessing game? You need to go take another look at how the system works, and what it is designed to do.

Posted by xtrafalgarx on (November 11, 2013, 16:12 GMT)

@Dirk: There arn't any tactics involved with DRS> It's all guessing game. There was a handful of poor reviews from the Englishmen, especially when they were batting, there is no skill to it it's all luck. Clarke isn't gambling when he goes up stairs, you go up stairs when you thunk it's out full stop. Sometimes you are wrong sometimes you are right, you can't "save up" reviews because the howler mightn't come!

Posted by arunrajaram on (November 11, 2013, 15:53 GMT)

Well, had Australia not gone through the hardships of DRS then Clarke wouldn't have raised this. Indians were on the receiving end most of the time and expressed similar views. Still they call BCCI as bullies. We have to address the core issues 1. limiting referrals, 2. taking it out of players hand and leaving it to the officials, 3. Removing subjectivity in decisions which aren't entirely accurate (e.g. trajectory of the hawk eye after it hits the pad). These are the common reasons why people who oppose DRS seem to raise. These are fair points and should be given a thought by the ICC cricketing committee. Otherwise we seem to be having these never ending debates.

Posted by samincolumbia on (November 11, 2013, 15:30 GMT)

Thank you BCCI for standing up and not giving in to this ridiculous system in the name of technology! One by one, the sheep are seeing the reality and getting around to India's point of view.

Posted by rajaram1105 on (November 11, 2013, 15:22 GMT)

DRS 'distorts the game". When one reads Michael Clarke's arguments most of them are very valid. I support his views where he says, ""As a captain, I'd just like the technology to be used to make more correct decisions, without all the complications of how many referrals remain or don't remain." He is also correct in saying if it is not helping the cause, it should be thrown out. Well said Michael. ICC should take a comprehensive look at the whole matter and come with a universally acceptable solution. Till such time we can withdraw DRS and allow the third umpire to communicate to the onfield umpires, if he feels any blatant wrong decision is given. While I am not sure if it can take away lot of pressure from the onfield umpires but I feel it could be better than the current quota of 2 and always hitting the captains with a dilemma. Definitely this needs to put heads together and chalk a way forward.

Posted by PM2012 on (November 11, 2013, 15:22 GMT)

Clarke talks of the 'complicated DRS rules' that meant Broad couldn't given be out, but neglects to mention the fact that had his DRS usage been better then he surely would have had a remaining review to use at this point.

Posted by popcorn on (November 11, 2013, 15:05 GMT)

I agree with Michael Clarke entirely. The original purpose of the DRS System was to eliminate howlers by the onfield umpires,(who are humans, incidentally, in case you did not know, hence likely to be imperfect), so technology would help them make more correct decisions, either asking for a referral HIMSELF to their colleague, the third umpire who is armed with slow-motion replays and hot spot and ball tracker and snicko -rather than prove his onfield decision wrong by the batsman, or fielding captain.Additoonally, I would like the TV umpire to whisper into his ear that he had got it wrong, even if the onfield umpire did not refer the decision to him. I would rather see it go back to the gentleman's game when we accepted the umpire's verdict with grace.Hey Ricky, if only the umpire had the benefit of technology when you were on 96 in your debut Test in Sri Lanka, you would not have been out lbw to a ball that was clearly going over the stumps.You would got your century on debut, mate.

Posted by cricketdebator on (November 11, 2013, 15:05 GMT)

I agree with the points made be Clark, except that I would still use the technology even if it is not 100% perfect. There should be no limit to the number of referrals and they should be put solely in the hands of the umpires. To deny a the bowler a wicket simply because the fielding side has no more referral left is absolutely ridiculous. It is even worse when a batsman loses his wicket in similar circumstances. I put the blame surely and squarely on ICC who for some unknown reason have long persisted with the current nonsensical regulations. And, until the appropriate and relevant changes are made, I suppose this debate will probably continue forever.

Posted by VJ_SWAP on (November 11, 2013, 15:00 GMT)

Instead of limited DRS referrals , we can use a penalty based DRS. i.e. let the number of referrals be unlimited ; but for a wrong referral your team will get a penalty of say 20 or 30 runs. Or the opposite team gets additional 20-30 runs. This will not only reduce the unnecessary referrals but also ensure that incidents like Stuart Broad's infamous reprieve at Trent Bridge wont happen.

Posted by amitdashore on (November 11, 2013, 15:00 GMT)

just as in case of a run-out, an umpire gives out when sure, n refers to third umpire when unsure, same way it should be for lbws n nicks or can refer decision when a player raises doubt..

Posted by ultimatewarrior on (November 11, 2013, 14:59 GMT)

There should be a panel of 3rd umpires (not just one umpire) and they should see every ball with same intensity as if a field umpire sees each ball. So whenever a terribly bad decision occurs, third umpire panel will interrupts and change the decision. By giving it into the hands of players(usually captains) we are enforcing them to possess the strategic & emotional ability to take decision when to use DRS, that is not a core ability for a cricketer. And I guess to shift his focus entirely on cricket, the power to alter the decisions should be in the hands of 3rd umpires(off-course after discussing with field umpire)..........((Using DRS also depends upon how big the cricketer star power is to take referral or not, this fact alone can change fate of young cricketer's career))

Posted by Venkat_Gowrishankar on (November 11, 2013, 14:59 GMT)

Mchale Clarke what have you done?. Eng, Aus and SA are not "supposed" to question DRS. Only BCCI and its friends are allowed to.

Posted by eddsnake on (November 11, 2013, 14:53 GMT)

I was a proponent of DRS initially, but it's obvious that it's changing the game and not for the better. Let's just go back to the days of the umpire's word being final, and make sure that we have the best umpires possible umpiring in international cricket, whether that means having one home and one neutral umpire (as would have been good for both of this year's Ashes series) or not. Hate to say it but perhaps the BCCI was right on this all along!

Posted by Cricketfan11111 on (November 11, 2013, 14:50 GMT)

Every body is happy when obvious errors are corrected. But current DRS is often used to review marginal decisions and that is when it gets complicated.

You don't need expensive hotspot and hawkeye technology to correct howlers. Take the reviews out of players hands and leave it to the third umpire. Give the third umpire one or two television replays and if/when he spots an error he can intervene and correct it.

Posted by   on (November 11, 2013, 14:48 GMT)

DRS is merely another tactical device available to captains, and Clarke has been a poor user of it. That's all. Cook and Smith are OK with it, Strauss was very good, Dhoni I bet would also be good but does not get the chance, but most other captains like Clarke are just too itchy-thumbed with the firing button on their new computer game.

Posted by Patrick_ on (November 11, 2013, 14:45 GMT)

LBW decisions are highly subjective and even with ball tracking one cannot be 100% sure of the exact results on marginal decisions. This has lead to losing referrals for the appealing side and seems to be one major issue. Leaving the decisions to umpires will still lead to bickering in the case marginal lbw decisions. In the case of Hotspot, I believe it still can be improved but isn't it a better idea to foolproof it in domestic tournaments rather than in international games and changing the rules every couple of months ?

Posted by pull_shot on (November 11, 2013, 14:30 GMT)

I accept with that DRS with umpire plus with out hot spot

Posted by class9ryan on (November 11, 2013, 14:29 GMT)

Its tough to use DRS because the feeling that technology is there but helpless can mentally trouble the teams, why do you need DRS ? Umpires of the past too made mistakes but they could not be proved, so players were not distraught. Now players can see umpys making errors, they lose quite a bit of belief in the umpires which is tough even for the Umpires.

Posted by Big_Maxy_Walker on (November 11, 2013, 14:21 GMT)

DRS is better than making decisions based on someone seeing something once at full speed. DRS is not perfect and like any change to a long standing sport is in its teething stage but I think Mr Clarke will see the benefit of having it during the coming series when you have umpires like Hill and Bowden making judgements. As seen in the previous Ashes series, DRS is not the problem, its the third umpire's interpretation that is the problem. There was more than enough poor umpiring in that series to have a case for DRS with snicko

Posted by DannyBurke on (November 11, 2013, 14:15 GMT)

If you go back to the days before the technology Broad would still not have been given out and the third umpire still wouldnt have had the ability to overrule the decision. So I am really not sure what Clarke's point is there. He is just bitter because he didnt use his reviews well and went for too many speculative decisions rather than ones where they felt the umpire was wrong.

I am not going to deny the systems needs improvements, thats a given as there is always going to be room for improvement, but I am also a realist in that its never going to be perfect but has increased the success rate of decisions.

Posted by   on (November 11, 2013, 14:11 GMT)

The problem is that people are expecting perfect DRS. There is nothing termed "perfect" in this world. Every system has it flaws. The DRS should be used to eliminate umpiring errors as much as possible. For this purpose, number of reviews should not be limited. In order to avoid teams exploiting this and wasting valuable time, DRS should be kept entirely at the hands of the third umpire. Whenever he sees a doubtful decision he should be allowed to communicate with the on field umpire and brief him on what he he has seen. Based on that if necessary on field umpire should be able to overturn the decision.

Posted by shane-oh on (November 11, 2013, 13:58 GMT)

There really isn't any logic to this view that if the technology isn't perfect then we shouldn't use it. In fact, it will only get better as it is used more. Fact: using the technology, perfect or not, means more correct decisions. I'm disappointed to hear Clarke saying he'd rather it wasn't used at all. We are never going to get every decision right, and he may be correct that giving it all back to the Umpires is a good idea. But not using it, because sometimes the decisions still end up wrong, is ridiculous and irrational.

Posted by   on (November 11, 2013, 13:48 GMT)

slowly and steadily everybody is started to accept that DRS is not needed and its useless!

Comments have now been closed for this article

Email Feedback Print
Daniel BrettigClose
Daniel Brettig Assistant editor Daniel Brettig had been a journalist for eight years when he joined ESPNcricinfo, but his fascination with cricket dates back to the early 1990s, when his dad helped him sneak into the family lounge room to watch the end of day-night World Series matches well past bedtime. Unapologetically passionate about indie music and the South Australian Redbacks, Daniel's chief cricketing achievement was to dismiss Wisden Almanack editor Lawrence Booth in the 2010 Ashes press match in Perth - a rare Australian victory that summer.
Country Fixtures Country Results
1st unofficial Test: Australia A v India A at Brisbane
Jul 6-9, 2014
2nd unofficial Test: Australia A v India A at Brisbane
Jul 13-17, 2014
Australia A v India A at Darwin
Jul 20, 2014
NPS v Sth Africa A at Palmerston
Jul 20, 2014
Australia A v NPS at Darwin
Jul 22, 2014
Complete fixtures » | Download Fixtures »
News | Features Last 3 days
News | Features Last 3 days