Durham v Hampshire, FP Trophy final, Lord's August 18, 2007

Captains against referrals



Phil Mustard was too late asking for a referral © Getty Images
Although Dale Benkenstein and Shane Warne were captains with very different emotions when play was abandoned in the Friends Provident final they agreed that third umpire referrals haven't worked in this year's tournament.

During Durham's innings there was an occasion where each side could have used the system with some justification. Phil Mustard, batting well on 49, was trapped lbw by James Bruce. However, replays showed the ball pitched a fraction outside leg stump but by the time Mustard asked for a referral it was based on footage from the dressing room.

Then, with Shivnarine Chanderpaul on 17, Chris Tremlett had a good shout for lbw turned down and this time the replays looked in favour of the bowler. But Warne didn't opt to use the third umpire, and said that he had discussed the issue with Benkenstein before the match.

"Both of us spoke at the start and we think if there was something obvious that would be the only way we'd refer it otherwise that's what the umpires are there to do," before adding that he didn't think the technology was up to standard. "When you get the technology 100% that's when you can use referrals, until it's three dimensional and you see it from every angle there's no point using it."

Benkenstein was equally lukewarm in his appraisal of the system, which hasn't seen a single decision overturned during the televised matches of the tournament. "It just doesn't work," he said. "Every time you refer something it doesn't get overturned. I think they need to use all the technology and if they are going to do it, do it 100%.

"And the umpires and players must buy into it. At the moment it's being done half-heartedly. The third umpires just keeping backing the onfield umpires. The umpires have to agree it's not a negative thing and don't see it as guys belittling their decision."

Andrew McGlashan is a staff writer on Cricinfo

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