Afghanistan v Bangladesh, Group A, Canberra February 18, 2015

Afghanistan's DRS reluctance

Plays of the day from the World Cup Group A match between Bangladesh and Afghanistan in Canberra

Hamid Hassan could have had a wicket in the third over, if Afghanistan had been quicker to adapt to DRS © Getty Images

Afghanistan's DRS reluctance

Afghanistan are not used to playing with the Decision Review System in place, and as early as the third over of the game they were required to make a call when the umpire struck down an appeal for caught behind against Tamim Iqbal. Mohammad Nabi and his team-mates got into a huddle and discussions went on till the time available to refer ran out. There was a sound on replays, and Snicko registered a spike too, but Afghanistan did not question Steve Davis' not-out decision. Afghanistan received another opportunity in the 41st over when Davis turned down a leg-before shout against Mushfiqur Rahim. Replays again indicated the impact was pad before bat, but they failed to utilise the review again.

Sarkar's change of plan

Mirwais Ashraf had tied down Bangladesh with his accurate medium-pace, his first eight overs costing only 17 and bringing two wickets too. Second ball of his ninth, though, Soumya Sarkar finally did what Bangladesh could have tried earlier - unsettling Ashraf's line and length. He stepped out and hammered a length ball over the wide long-on boundary and the bowler's run-tally almost doubled in that over, to 32.

Zazai's acrobatics

Afsar Zazai was picked ahead of the experienced wicketkeeper-batsman Mohammad Shahzad for the World Cup, and Afghanistan's first wicket in the tournament's history owed a lot to him. Tamim tried to dab Ashraf fine, and went a touch too close to the Zazai, who dived quickly to his left. He'd got to the ball with one hand, but even as he was coming down, it threatened to fall out. Zazai showed superb reflexes again, using his right hand while still in motion to keep the ball from slipping away.

Shakib's third-man travails

Samiullah Shenwari upper cut Taskin Ahmed high in the air towards third man in the 11th over. Shakib Al Hasan steadied himself and decided not to run forward for it. He may or may not have made it had he tried, and took it on the bounce in the end. Four overs later, Nawroz Mangal guided the same bowler towards the same fielder in the same position. This time Shakib made a dash for it, took the dipping ball as he dived forward, but it burst out as he fell on to the ground.

Rubel's tumble

Mangal had helped rebuild Afghanistan's chase from 3 for 3 when he swept Mahmudullah hard in the 23rd over. The connection was good enough for the ball to rush to Rubel Hossain at deep square leg. The fielder tumbled hard on to the outfield after taking a difficult high catch, but there were no celebrations. He simply remained on the ground for several moments before being helped off the field. As it turned out that he had hurt his left leg before taking the tumble. He returned, though, to start his second spell in the 33rd over.

Abhishek Purohit is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Afgun_Mujahid on February 19, 2015, 3:44 GMT

    i think the AFGHANS should have carried on with wrong decision of umpire without making any fuss over it, it was a good game...Afghans did not play to their potential, they could have done much better

  • MahboobGulestani on February 18, 2015, 21:31 GMT

    Well played by AFGHANISTAN bowlers, specially Shahpur Zadran & Mirwais Ashraf. I am sure everyone will agree with me that AFGHANISTAN'S bowlers are as good as any other baowlers of test cricket nations. However, they need to be more consistant in fielding (throughout the whole 50 overs) and definitely batting NEEDS to be improved. But still, Afghanistan is the fast growing cricketing nation and achieved a lot in the past few years. Thanks to Pakistan and Australia for giving Afghanistan the opportunity in the past to play them friendly matches. It will be great if Afghanistan is given more opportunity/chances to play other countries as well. I am proud of all the Afghan National Cricket players and I am sure they will achieve more success in the near future Inshallah! Note: The game could have been different if the Umpires didn't make those mistakes. But still, Bangladesh would have got 220 runs or so (which was still enough to beat Afghanistan).

  • D.S.A on February 18, 2015, 17:28 GMT

    If Hawk-eye is accurate enough to be used in International cricket, it should be able to decide, with certainty, the amount of the ball that is in-line, with 50% or more being the minimum acceptable level to conclude it was in-line. The importance of the decision, in relation to the result of the match, is completely irrelevant, as no one should receive a bad decision by the umpire. Ultimately, I think the third umpire should be observing all on-field decisions, and halt play if something needs to be observed with more scrutiny, and of course, have the power to override the on-field decisions like they can already, but with greater frequency, to attain more correct decisions. P2 of 2.

  • D.S.A on February 18, 2015, 17:24 GMT

    Afghanistan should not be blamed for not using the system correctly, because they rarely use it, so how can anyone expect them to use correctly like other countries do?

    The umpire that gave the LBW decision against the lower order Afghanistan batsmen (do not remember his name) was absolutely awful, and shows one of the many flaws in the way that the rules are constructed around the use of DRS. The correct decision was that the delivery would be hitting outside the line of off-stump, and so it should have been not out as not much, if any, was in line, yet the umpire concluded it was. This was mainly due to the pressure generated by the appeal, and the opposition it was against. Hawk-eye showed the tiniest amount of the bowl was in-line, so it apparently should be Umpire's Call, which is wrong. P1 of 2.

  • EdwinD on February 18, 2015, 16:50 GMT

    The ICC really are incredibly consistently short-sighted. The most important factor in having DRS, in my opinion is to have as more CORRECT decisions as possible. For a ´catch´ review , where there is sufficient evidence, if the umpire gets the decision incorrect, the right decision should be relayed to the umpire, whilst LBWs should remain as is.

    Wake up ICC, you are ruining this beautiful game of ours - yes ours, not yours.

  • dummy4fb on February 18, 2015, 15:13 GMT

    Still early days into the world cup and the quality of umpiring is really poor. ICC needs to take a note of that.

  • Kirkirro on February 18, 2015, 14:52 GMT

    This game was a waste of time.

  • dummy4fb on February 18, 2015, 14:52 GMT

    What's bad is not that Afghanistan did not use the reviews when they should have, the problem is that the Afghanistan should have never had to make the call on whether they should use the reviews or not. If it is felt that a wrong decision was being made, then the third umpire should be able to intervene and reverse the on-field umpire decision. If he cannot do that, might as well not use DRS at all. It is a useless system with all the restrictions anyway.

  • Oiqkhi on February 18, 2015, 12:27 GMT

    Evidence that review system should be worldwide to aid teams in reviewing the decision if they think it is what they think it is.

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