Samir Chopra August 2, 2010

The UDRS and Test cricket

Recently the just-retired Rudi Koertzen opined that the Umpire Decision Review System (UDRS) should be implemented world-wide in all Test cricket
26

Recently the just-retired Rudi Koertzen opined that the Umpire Decision Review System (UDRS) should be implemented world-wide in all Test cricket. I personally don't like the UDRS (as it stands) for a variety of reasons: the technology does not work as well as it should; it has been introduced prematurely into the highest form of the game without adequate trials at lower levels; and more sentimentally, it injects a form of second-guessing into the game that robs one of the elements that makes the game what it is - the dreaded finality of the umpire's raised finger. But I agree with Rudi anyway.

For if the UDRS is to be implemented, and certainly, as matters stand, it will be, then I suggest that it either be implemented in every single test played anywhere in the world, or not at all. This piece-meal implementation, subject to the whims of individual boards and the local availability of technology, is an incoherent state of affairs for a very simple reason. When the UDRS is used in a game of cricket, you simply aren't playing the same game as one in which it is not used.

A game is constituted, and more strongly, defined, by its set of rules. To call a game basketball it is not enough that you play on a court, which has nets on both ends, and is of the right dimensions; the players' activities must be constrained so that what they do on the court is recognisable as 'basketball'. Otherwise (say if contact with the foot was allowed), they are playing some variant, possibly an interesting game in its own right, but it has lost the right to be called basketball.

What the current implementation of the UDRS does is to introduce a variance, and a significant one at that, into the very heart of the game. Nominally, batsmen are out when the umpires say they are out. With the UDRS, the batsman is out when the umpire says he is out, and provided an appeal against the decision has not been overturned; or the batsman is out in case a successful appeal against an earlier decision of "not out" is made. In both cases (UDRS and non-UDRS), the umpire on the ground has to raise his finger but the decision-making process is significantly altered.

Surely, I'm not the only person who thinks this radically changes the nature of the game? What was out in Trent Bridge was not out in Galle and vice-versa. A batsman or a captain playing in a Test with UDRS appeals to spare is playing in a very different set of circumstances than one playing in one without it: the dismissals of batsmen proceed according to a very different set of constraints.

My contention that the introduction of the UDRS makes the game a different one is a rather strong claim, but I make it because the UDRS interferes with batsmen's dismissals and not just things like boundary calls. A batsman's dismissal is a singular event in cricket; if there is one thing in any version of the game that should be globally uniform it is the definition of a wicket. And it is precisely that that the UDRS alters.

Such would not be the case if the UDRS was used in all Tests the world over. All teams would proceed with a uniform understanding of what constituted a valid dismissal. All of the system's glitches and built-in human idiosyncrasies would be everyone's cross to bear.

But the current state of affairs is simply incoherent: we are being treated to the spectacle of the highest form of the game being played according to different sets of rules depending on the location of the game and the identity of the participants.

It's bad enough that versions of the game have proliferated; do we really need two versions of Test cricket as well?

Samir Chopra lives in Brooklyn and teaches Philosophy at the City University of New York. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dragon on January 26, 2012, 17:22 GMT

    Umm, are you really just giving this info out for ntohnig?

  • PADDLE SWEEP on August 12, 2010, 13:51 GMT

    UDRS in test cricket is an insult to the umpires.the classical game is eaten up slowly by days passing on!!let test cricket be like the way it is now,try the hell of other experiments in t20 an odi or beach cricket whatever... it will kill the breed of umpires and any insane can then be an umpire!!!wake up ICC technology cant prove 100% effective nor the lie detectors can catch lies alltime!!! instead of that organize special summits and trainings for the umpires.only in the fielding especially if u can bring technology bring something which can tell whether or not a catch claimed by a fielder is right,and so on!!!

  • Terry Jones from Australia on August 9, 2010, 21:08 GMT

    I like hotspot and sniko but not convinced about hawkie as the way the ball moves can be tampered with. As long as the technology is handled by ICC team and not either country or commentators then hawkie will still be okay. The review system is good as it allows players to have a standard that is higher then humans can determine. Its like the invention of the telescope and someone says "why use a telescope I can see them easy enough as it is". The technology and implementation takes time to get right, but needs to be across the board in all tests. Also, ALL wickets should be reviewed AS the batsmen walks off automatically. The referal system should only be by the bowling side and should be unlimited. IF the bowling side is using up too much time doing it THEN the batting side should get "runs conceeded" extras at 150% of run rate for that session (in that innings). Will make teams get through overs quicker, resolve bad decisions and not financially disadvantage captains.

  • Atif Murtaza Mahmud on August 9, 2010, 7:14 GMT

    With all due respect, sir, you would have to be practical. "THE DREADED FINGER" is merely a tradition. Wrong "DREADED FINGERS" can cost a team a game. I won't ,mention any names but BANGLADESH CRICKET TEAM had many decision related problems with a certain umpire. So, UDRS can help.

  • waterbuffalo on August 7, 2010, 5:27 GMT

    Thanks for your replies, guys, anyway it doesn't matter, Pakistan calls up Mohd. Yousuf, and THEY DON'T play him, and then bang! 72, HarHar! Hawkeye or no hawkeye, this pakistani team cannot even get to hundred, I fully expect them to be bowled for 60 in the next inngs, and they fully deserve it, for not playing Mohd. Yousuf. I think hawkeye is wasted on the Pakistanis, all you have to do is wait five mins for them to get out.

  • Ken Miller on August 6, 2010, 23:40 GMT

    I have to say that I like the UDRS. I understand that it does change the game, but as you brought up, a sport is defined by its rules. Cricket has some very finely defined rules, where the tiniest nick, or a difference of millimeters is important. I believe that now that technology has gotten to a point where it can help accurately enforce those rules, it should be used. I admit that I have only followed the sport for about 2 years, so I don't have much emotional attachment to the traditions of the sport. But surely, the correct decision is of critical importance. Especially that now, since the viewer and media see what is correct, isn't the umpire's position more secure if players have the opportunity to appeal decisions they feel are way off base?

  • Sriram Sridharan on August 5, 2010, 19:20 GMT

    @zaxar: Completely agree with you zaxar. But I was trying to make the same point as you. Waterbuffalo was arguing that hawk eye doesnt take into account the nature of the pitch, shape of the ball etc in making its calculations. My point is that it probably doesnt have to. As long as you have measured the swing and bounce of the ball from the point where it bounced to the point where it hits the batsman's pads (which I am sure any sane algorithm will do), predicting the path of the ball for another metre or 2 will not really be a problem. And as you say, getting an accuracy of abt 1 or 2 cms should not really be that hard.

    To allay the fears of most of the people, I believe that the ICC should conduct some tests which shows the accuracy of hawk eye. Conducting such tests should not really be a problem. Just ask bowlers to bowl at a wall so that you know where the ball hits the wall. Then let hawk eye predict where the ball would have hit the wall and measure the error induced.

  • Jonathan on August 5, 2010, 4:37 GMT

    Samir, while it would make sense to have the same conditions in all Test matches, I don't agree with this argument at all. The umpire's finger being necessary for a dismissal (at least when there is dispute) may be an important part of how cricket is played, but it is not in the same league as the definitions of how a batsman can be out which the umpire relies on. Kids playing in the street, stopping to argue until consensus is reached/someone gives in, is no less cricket than an organised game with home/neutral/batting team umpires. How the decisions are made really is secondary.

  • zxaar on August 4, 2010, 22:48 GMT

    @Anonymous " does not take the wear and tear of a cricket ball into consideration, and it cannot tell if the ball hit the seam of the ball or hit the side, it cannot tell if the ball is soft or hard, and it cannot measure the swing." First of all, I am not sure how much of the above is true. " ------------------------------- I have written programs that calculate trajectory for golf balls for my company, that we mainly use for research purposes. (brand SRIXON, Dunlop). And have done testing against experimental data. I can tell you that longer the ball travels the more error is induced. We could predict golf ball within 1 yard of its roughly 250 yards travel. So if cricket ball moves within 1 or 2 meters error won't be more than a 1cm (that is even too high). LBW is mainly a suspect to error in trajectory calculations but seeing how wide stumps are, i would say we are pretty accurate. If they want i can help them improving their calculations.

  • Anonymous on August 4, 2010, 19:43 GMT

    @John Smith: Dhoni didnt play test matches against Lanka in 2008.

  • Dragon on January 26, 2012, 17:22 GMT

    Umm, are you really just giving this info out for ntohnig?

  • PADDLE SWEEP on August 12, 2010, 13:51 GMT

    UDRS in test cricket is an insult to the umpires.the classical game is eaten up slowly by days passing on!!let test cricket be like the way it is now,try the hell of other experiments in t20 an odi or beach cricket whatever... it will kill the breed of umpires and any insane can then be an umpire!!!wake up ICC technology cant prove 100% effective nor the lie detectors can catch lies alltime!!! instead of that organize special summits and trainings for the umpires.only in the fielding especially if u can bring technology bring something which can tell whether or not a catch claimed by a fielder is right,and so on!!!

  • Terry Jones from Australia on August 9, 2010, 21:08 GMT

    I like hotspot and sniko but not convinced about hawkie as the way the ball moves can be tampered with. As long as the technology is handled by ICC team and not either country or commentators then hawkie will still be okay. The review system is good as it allows players to have a standard that is higher then humans can determine. Its like the invention of the telescope and someone says "why use a telescope I can see them easy enough as it is". The technology and implementation takes time to get right, but needs to be across the board in all tests. Also, ALL wickets should be reviewed AS the batsmen walks off automatically. The referal system should only be by the bowling side and should be unlimited. IF the bowling side is using up too much time doing it THEN the batting side should get "runs conceeded" extras at 150% of run rate for that session (in that innings). Will make teams get through overs quicker, resolve bad decisions and not financially disadvantage captains.

  • Atif Murtaza Mahmud on August 9, 2010, 7:14 GMT

    With all due respect, sir, you would have to be practical. "THE DREADED FINGER" is merely a tradition. Wrong "DREADED FINGERS" can cost a team a game. I won't ,mention any names but BANGLADESH CRICKET TEAM had many decision related problems with a certain umpire. So, UDRS can help.

  • waterbuffalo on August 7, 2010, 5:27 GMT

    Thanks for your replies, guys, anyway it doesn't matter, Pakistan calls up Mohd. Yousuf, and THEY DON'T play him, and then bang! 72, HarHar! Hawkeye or no hawkeye, this pakistani team cannot even get to hundred, I fully expect them to be bowled for 60 in the next inngs, and they fully deserve it, for not playing Mohd. Yousuf. I think hawkeye is wasted on the Pakistanis, all you have to do is wait five mins for them to get out.

  • Ken Miller on August 6, 2010, 23:40 GMT

    I have to say that I like the UDRS. I understand that it does change the game, but as you brought up, a sport is defined by its rules. Cricket has some very finely defined rules, where the tiniest nick, or a difference of millimeters is important. I believe that now that technology has gotten to a point where it can help accurately enforce those rules, it should be used. I admit that I have only followed the sport for about 2 years, so I don't have much emotional attachment to the traditions of the sport. But surely, the correct decision is of critical importance. Especially that now, since the viewer and media see what is correct, isn't the umpire's position more secure if players have the opportunity to appeal decisions they feel are way off base?

  • Sriram Sridharan on August 5, 2010, 19:20 GMT

    @zaxar: Completely agree with you zaxar. But I was trying to make the same point as you. Waterbuffalo was arguing that hawk eye doesnt take into account the nature of the pitch, shape of the ball etc in making its calculations. My point is that it probably doesnt have to. As long as you have measured the swing and bounce of the ball from the point where it bounced to the point where it hits the batsman's pads (which I am sure any sane algorithm will do), predicting the path of the ball for another metre or 2 will not really be a problem. And as you say, getting an accuracy of abt 1 or 2 cms should not really be that hard.

    To allay the fears of most of the people, I believe that the ICC should conduct some tests which shows the accuracy of hawk eye. Conducting such tests should not really be a problem. Just ask bowlers to bowl at a wall so that you know where the ball hits the wall. Then let hawk eye predict where the ball would have hit the wall and measure the error induced.

  • Jonathan on August 5, 2010, 4:37 GMT

    Samir, while it would make sense to have the same conditions in all Test matches, I don't agree with this argument at all. The umpire's finger being necessary for a dismissal (at least when there is dispute) may be an important part of how cricket is played, but it is not in the same league as the definitions of how a batsman can be out which the umpire relies on. Kids playing in the street, stopping to argue until consensus is reached/someone gives in, is no less cricket than an organised game with home/neutral/batting team umpires. How the decisions are made really is secondary.

  • zxaar on August 4, 2010, 22:48 GMT

    @Anonymous " does not take the wear and tear of a cricket ball into consideration, and it cannot tell if the ball hit the seam of the ball or hit the side, it cannot tell if the ball is soft or hard, and it cannot measure the swing." First of all, I am not sure how much of the above is true. " ------------------------------- I have written programs that calculate trajectory for golf balls for my company, that we mainly use for research purposes. (brand SRIXON, Dunlop). And have done testing against experimental data. I can tell you that longer the ball travels the more error is induced. We could predict golf ball within 1 yard of its roughly 250 yards travel. So if cricket ball moves within 1 or 2 meters error won't be more than a 1cm (that is even too high). LBW is mainly a suspect to error in trajectory calculations but seeing how wide stumps are, i would say we are pretty accurate. If they want i can help them improving their calculations.

  • Anonymous on August 4, 2010, 19:43 GMT

    @John Smith: Dhoni didnt play test matches against Lanka in 2008.

  • Sriram on August 4, 2010, 16:48 GMT

    @waterbuffalo : Again you are missing the point. I agree with you that if hawkeye has to predict the swing and bounce of the cricket ball immediately after the ball hits the ground, it would probably do a lousy job. But thats not what happens. It notes the trajectory of the ball from the moment it bounces till the moment it hits the batsman's pads. Data till this point is available. What hawkeye does is predict the trajectory from the batsman's pads to the stumps. If you think this cannot be done, you dont know anything about signal processing, motion prediction, etc. The cricket ball which has bounced 2 feet from hitting the pitch to reaching the pads will not suddenly bounce 10 more feet over the next few metres. Any sudden bounce or swing starts the moment the ball hits the ground. Of course hawkeye will not be reliable in cases where the ball is too full or on yorker length.

  • Sunil D'Souza on August 4, 2010, 8:08 GMT

    A slew of wrong decisions have led to the hue and cry for technology to step in.WHile on one hand not everyone will be in agreementwitht he decisons made on the field by both the umpires and the UDRS,to achieve almost total use of all technology available.We have snicko,hawk eye,hotspot available.Surely the resident boffins can combine these and invent the almost perfect technolgy?We had the fiasco of the Richie Benaud suggested run rate calculation in the world cup before Duckworth Lewis method has been used eversince.For UDRS to work all technology has to be used.

  • dinosaurus on August 4, 2010, 7:25 GMT

    The UDRS can't fix all inconsistency in umpiring but it is a powerful step in the right direction. It also exposes those who are never lbw in their own judgment. If implemented universally, it would remove some of the nastiness on show here, as well as in other circumstances.

  • Anonymous on August 3, 2010, 19:09 GMT

    @waterbuffalo: I agree with a lot of your points. I do agree that hawkeye is inexact. But it is not as inexact as you make it out to be. You say that hawkeye "does not take the wear and tear of a cricket ball into consideration, and it cannot tell if the ball hit the seam of the ball or hit the side, it cannot tell if the ball is soft or hard, and it cannot measure the swing." First of all, I am not sure how much of the above is true. But even if it is true, what you say is correct only if the ball hits the batsmans pads on the full before bouncing. In almost all the cases, the ball hits the pitch, and has started moving along a trajectory before hitting the pads. The ball is not going to greatly alter its trajectory beyond that as it is not going to bounce again. So, hawk eye will be able to give a fairly accurate estimate (in my opinion better than the umpire) as it captures the initial part of the trajectory very well (again in my opinion, better than the umpire).

  • John Smith on August 3, 2010, 18:08 GMT

    Given the thumbs down from Sachin will the BCCI have the balls to introduce UDRS for the forthcoming series against Australia in OCT ? They can't say it is too expensive given their bank balance! Doni clearly needs all the practice he can get in getting the calls right, given his very poor track record against Sri Lanka in 08. Inspite of Rudi and Punter calling for it, I suspect that BCCI apparatchiks will bow to Sachin's wishes ! How about all you Indian supporters backing UDRS and pressuring the BCCI.

  • wajira on August 3, 2010, 13:11 GMT

    Simple . without UDRS umpair decision accuracy is 92%. with UDRS it goes up to 97%. why is still teams ( like india) say UDRS is not good. the fact in life is nothing is perfect, in such a world near perfect is better than 10% less perfect.

    UDRS must be implemented at all countries as a mandatory meassure.

  • waterbuffalo on August 3, 2010, 11:35 GMT

    @ Shahid, Mahek and TC, thank you for your well comsidered replies, look, I bowled in the nets all the time, if the ball hit the seam, it would leap up off a length, if the seam was scambled, e.g Glenn McGrath, it would stay low, does hawkeye know this? How? If the bowler is 6'4" how does hawkeye know the bounce? I think technology should be used to see whether a lefty pitched in line, and whether there was an inside edge, get rid of the howlers, I agree 100%, but haweye is giving marginal decisions, which is ridiculous, and for the person who said, hawkeye has a failure rate of 2%, either you have not watched enough cricket, or you have never bowled in your life. I never got a single decision on the leg stump bail, like Anderson did, what I am saying is simple, what happened to the benefit of the doubt? If I bowled in the age of hawkeye I would have had an extra hundred wickets, because I was an in-swing bowler, but I am sorry, hitting the leg stump bail is not plumb.

  • Humayun on August 3, 2010, 10:25 GMT

    @ Shahid, if UDRS would have not been there then correct decisions amount would have gone below 90% in the Trent Bridge, as many decisions turned over after review! ...

  • Sunil D'Souza on August 3, 2010, 9:04 GMT

    There's cricket,played traditionally over 5 days a true test of skills.Debunking the idea of all umpires being "neutral"a select panel was created.But even they made mistakes.So you have thE udrs.The question is are all technolgies availablebeing used?Hot spot,snicko,have to be refined to become as error proof as possible.Fortunately the ICC has enough "back room" boys,who are not given to sensationalism to think this one through.Unfortunately the technical committes formed to review the laws of cricket have had their upheavals.Good cricket commentrators and people with the best interests at heart still exist.Right now its fair that the system remains one of choice and not mandatory.So it should be till technology has the unequivocable answer.

  • Anonymous on August 3, 2010, 8:33 GMT

    Watterbuffulo - Hawkeye has a eror ratio of around 2% - thus why the "umpires call stands" system exists. The system is completely logical. The Trent Bridge test match was not decided by umpiring error, that claim may have been made without UDRS!

  • TC on August 3, 2010, 4:24 GMT

    I agree with Waterbuffalo and Shahid. Hawkeye, unlike Snicko and hotspot, does not seem to accurately predict several aspects of the dynamics of the ball, one of which I notice quite frequently is the inability to account for the dip in the trajectory of the old ball after the bounce. I don't think the fans (or the players) would mind getting out to a ball that (seemingly) misses the leg stump by an inch or not getting a wicket to a ball that (apparently) would shave the top of the bail. Leave the hard work to the umpires. Snicko and hotspot gets rid of the glaring errors and are cheaper to implement as well. Make it mandatory in all forms of the game under all conditions.

  • Mahek on August 3, 2010, 3:39 GMT

    Waterbuffalo, Hawkeye does take into account all those factors because it predicts the path after impact based on the the ball's trajectory before it. In fact, if the ball hits the batsman too early after pitching then Hawkeye's predictive tool is not considered for making a decision. It's anything but subjective.

    Shahid, the reason Azhar Ali went back in the first innings was he didn't take the referral available to him. What's more, his captain himself said Ali had nicked the ball so how was it the wrong decision? Kamran Akmal got a bad one in the second innings but his teammates had used up two referrals before him, one of them by his own brother who was caught plumb in front.

  • Gonna on August 3, 2010, 1:13 GMT

    Only Tendulkar does not like UDRS because when he bats most umpires will not give a line decision as he is after all the biggest name in cricket now. He however likes hot spot which shows that apart from batting he does not read or is illiterate about the fact that hot spot is part of UDRS ??? Hello are you there Sachin ?? USE UDRS AND CLEAR ANY DOUBTS THAT ARE FLOATING AROUND IN THIS ASPECT OF THE GAME, UMPIRES ARE HUMAN AND NEED A BIT OF HELP TO KEEP THE COMMENTATORS AND EXPERTS OFF THEIR BACKS. WELL DONE RUDI, YOU SAID IT.

  • Shahid on August 2, 2010, 20:35 GMT

    Even if its used in all the test matches, my question is, does it remove the bad decisions. "NO" I'll say. In first test between England & Pakistan, Azhar Ali in the 1st innings and one of the Akmals in the 2nd innings went back to pavilion even when they should have been not out. Now if 2 out of 43 wickets are a incorrect decision (if all other were the correct decisions)then correct decisions amount to 95,35% and that result is not better than what we have always achieved without UDRS. It is said, the elite umpires make around 96% correct decisions. So in my opinion, even its unfair that if top order batsmen use those 2 chances incorrectly then middle and lower order has to pay the price.

  • Humayun on August 2, 2010, 19:46 GMT

    One and the most important benefit of UDRS is that Umpires no more have space to stand being unjust (mistake is by chance!). Umpiring in India Australia, England Pakistan etc. matches has been very poor and unjust. It has been proven in history that injustice stays not for long and UDRS is putting an end to injustice in cricket. I would suggest to involve UDRS in ODIs as well IF umpires remain to be unfair and impartial ...

  • waterbuffalo on August 2, 2010, 18:37 GMT

    Hi, Samir,sorry to repeat myself, I like Hotspot, from the front, I like snickometer, that rules out inside edges, the howlers, but I do not trust hawkeye at all, it is an inexact science, completely subjective, in my opinion, and the 'umpire call stands' rule is a load of , well you know....hawkeye might work for tennis, where the balls are always fresh and new, it does not take the wear and tear of a cricket ball into consideration, and it cannot tell if the ball hit the seam of the ball or hit the side, it cannot tell if the ball is soft or hard, and it cannot measure the swing, ergo, the system is full of flaws.

  • No featured comments at the moment.

  • waterbuffalo on August 2, 2010, 18:37 GMT

    Hi, Samir,sorry to repeat myself, I like Hotspot, from the front, I like snickometer, that rules out inside edges, the howlers, but I do not trust hawkeye at all, it is an inexact science, completely subjective, in my opinion, and the 'umpire call stands' rule is a load of , well you know....hawkeye might work for tennis, where the balls are always fresh and new, it does not take the wear and tear of a cricket ball into consideration, and it cannot tell if the ball hit the seam of the ball or hit the side, it cannot tell if the ball is soft or hard, and it cannot measure the swing, ergo, the system is full of flaws.

  • Humayun on August 2, 2010, 19:46 GMT

    One and the most important benefit of UDRS is that Umpires no more have space to stand being unjust (mistake is by chance!). Umpiring in India Australia, England Pakistan etc. matches has been very poor and unjust. It has been proven in history that injustice stays not for long and UDRS is putting an end to injustice in cricket. I would suggest to involve UDRS in ODIs as well IF umpires remain to be unfair and impartial ...

  • Shahid on August 2, 2010, 20:35 GMT

    Even if its used in all the test matches, my question is, does it remove the bad decisions. "NO" I'll say. In first test between England & Pakistan, Azhar Ali in the 1st innings and one of the Akmals in the 2nd innings went back to pavilion even when they should have been not out. Now if 2 out of 43 wickets are a incorrect decision (if all other were the correct decisions)then correct decisions amount to 95,35% and that result is not better than what we have always achieved without UDRS. It is said, the elite umpires make around 96% correct decisions. So in my opinion, even its unfair that if top order batsmen use those 2 chances incorrectly then middle and lower order has to pay the price.

  • Gonna on August 3, 2010, 1:13 GMT

    Only Tendulkar does not like UDRS because when he bats most umpires will not give a line decision as he is after all the biggest name in cricket now. He however likes hot spot which shows that apart from batting he does not read or is illiterate about the fact that hot spot is part of UDRS ??? Hello are you there Sachin ?? USE UDRS AND CLEAR ANY DOUBTS THAT ARE FLOATING AROUND IN THIS ASPECT OF THE GAME, UMPIRES ARE HUMAN AND NEED A BIT OF HELP TO KEEP THE COMMENTATORS AND EXPERTS OFF THEIR BACKS. WELL DONE RUDI, YOU SAID IT.

  • Mahek on August 3, 2010, 3:39 GMT

    Waterbuffalo, Hawkeye does take into account all those factors because it predicts the path after impact based on the the ball's trajectory before it. In fact, if the ball hits the batsman too early after pitching then Hawkeye's predictive tool is not considered for making a decision. It's anything but subjective.

    Shahid, the reason Azhar Ali went back in the first innings was he didn't take the referral available to him. What's more, his captain himself said Ali had nicked the ball so how was it the wrong decision? Kamran Akmal got a bad one in the second innings but his teammates had used up two referrals before him, one of them by his own brother who was caught plumb in front.

  • TC on August 3, 2010, 4:24 GMT

    I agree with Waterbuffalo and Shahid. Hawkeye, unlike Snicko and hotspot, does not seem to accurately predict several aspects of the dynamics of the ball, one of which I notice quite frequently is the inability to account for the dip in the trajectory of the old ball after the bounce. I don't think the fans (or the players) would mind getting out to a ball that (seemingly) misses the leg stump by an inch or not getting a wicket to a ball that (apparently) would shave the top of the bail. Leave the hard work to the umpires. Snicko and hotspot gets rid of the glaring errors and are cheaper to implement as well. Make it mandatory in all forms of the game under all conditions.

  • Anonymous on August 3, 2010, 8:33 GMT

    Watterbuffulo - Hawkeye has a eror ratio of around 2% - thus why the "umpires call stands" system exists. The system is completely logical. The Trent Bridge test match was not decided by umpiring error, that claim may have been made without UDRS!

  • Sunil D'Souza on August 3, 2010, 9:04 GMT

    There's cricket,played traditionally over 5 days a true test of skills.Debunking the idea of all umpires being "neutral"a select panel was created.But even they made mistakes.So you have thE udrs.The question is are all technolgies availablebeing used?Hot spot,snicko,have to be refined to become as error proof as possible.Fortunately the ICC has enough "back room" boys,who are not given to sensationalism to think this one through.Unfortunately the technical committes formed to review the laws of cricket have had their upheavals.Good cricket commentrators and people with the best interests at heart still exist.Right now its fair that the system remains one of choice and not mandatory.So it should be till technology has the unequivocable answer.

  • Humayun on August 3, 2010, 10:25 GMT

    @ Shahid, if UDRS would have not been there then correct decisions amount would have gone below 90% in the Trent Bridge, as many decisions turned over after review! ...

  • waterbuffalo on August 3, 2010, 11:35 GMT

    @ Shahid, Mahek and TC, thank you for your well comsidered replies, look, I bowled in the nets all the time, if the ball hit the seam, it would leap up off a length, if the seam was scambled, e.g Glenn McGrath, it would stay low, does hawkeye know this? How? If the bowler is 6'4" how does hawkeye know the bounce? I think technology should be used to see whether a lefty pitched in line, and whether there was an inside edge, get rid of the howlers, I agree 100%, but haweye is giving marginal decisions, which is ridiculous, and for the person who said, hawkeye has a failure rate of 2%, either you have not watched enough cricket, or you have never bowled in your life. I never got a single decision on the leg stump bail, like Anderson did, what I am saying is simple, what happened to the benefit of the doubt? If I bowled in the age of hawkeye I would have had an extra hundred wickets, because I was an in-swing bowler, but I am sorry, hitting the leg stump bail is not plumb.