ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 / News

India v England, World Cup 2011, Group B, Bangalore

Dhoni angered by UDRS ruling

ESPNcricinfo staff

February 27, 2011

Comments: 338 | Text size: A | A

MS Dhoni calls for a referral when Ian Bell was struck on the pads by Yuvraj Singh, India v England, World Cup, Group B, Bangalore, February 27, 2011
MS Dhoni called for the review system after Ian Bell was struck in front by Yuvraj Singh © Getty Images

India don't like the UDRS and one moment during the thrilling World Cup group match against England in Bangalore will have given them even more reason to distrust the technology when Ian Bell survived an lbw referral. It left MS Dhoni cursing the system as he called it an adulteration of human decision making and technlogy.

At the start of the 25th over of their gargangtuan run-chase, England were coasting more than 20 ahead of India in comparison. Then Yuvraj Singh struck Bell, who was stretching foward attempting one of those adventurous paddle sweeps, on the pad but umpire Billy Bowden turned down the appeal. The Indians did what they have been avoiding doing for more than two years - turn to the decision review.

The slow motion replay showed up on the giant screen and to the naked eye it met with most criteria: not a no ball, hitting in line of the stumps and striking the wicket. The crowd roared with delight expecting Bell to be on his way and he had already begun his dejected trek back, supposedly out for 17 to complete another unfullfilled one-day innings.

Until, that is, his captain began to holler him to a halt halfway to the dressing room. The last criteria that was showing up on the screen indicated the distance that the ball would have to travel from point of impact to the stumps was more than 2.5 metres, a rule most on the ground did not know about. Not even England.

The 2.5m rule has been put into place because it is from that point onwards that the precision of the ball tracking technology begins to reduce. That last piece of information was conveyed to Bowden by the third umpire and he stuck to his original decision. Not out. Too far down the pitch.

Dhoni was far from amused, finding it difficult to accept that both technology and human intervention played a part in coming to the decision which allowed Bell to survive and make another 52 runs. "Adulteration is quite bad, whether it is natural or technology," he said. "I think the adulteration of technology with human intention was the reason why we didn't get that wicket. Hopefully next time, it will be [either] technology or human intention [in the UDRS]."

The 2.5m ruling surprised most of the players, the England captain Andrew Strauss being informed about it during the review itself. "Apparently if you are that far down the pitch it needs to be hitting middle stump to be given out. I didn't know that was part of the rules," he said. "Obviously Belly was lucky to get away with it."

When he was asked whether he had known about the 2.5m rule Dhoni didn't hide his frustration. "Well, if the Hawkeye says it is going to hit the stump, and it's going to hit the middle stump, then [there is] no reason why the distance really matters," he said.

He went on to recall a dismissal of his own when he had stepped outside his crease and was given lbw after he was hit on the shin. "UDRS was not there...If I can be given out, why not other batsmen? So whether it is 2.5m or 2.4 or 2.6, it is pretty difficult for me. What I saw was the ball hitting the stump. After that, the rest of the rule book is rested with the third and the fourth umpire. Whatever they decided, we said, 'Okay, whatever they decide, we get on with the game'."

The ICC playing conditions relating to this part of the system come under Process of Consultation No. 3.3 (i). It states that if a 'not out' decision is being reviewed and the distance from impact to the stumps is greater than 2.5m then the third umpire passes this information to the on-field official along with: the distance from the wickets of the point of impact with the batsman, the approximate distance from the point of pitching to the point of impact, and whether the ball is predicted to the hit the stumps.

The playing condition goes onto state that: "In such a case the on-field umpire shall have regard to the normal cricketing principles concerning the level of certainty in making his decision as to whether to change his decision."


Comments: 338 
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Posted by Sojourner on (March 2, 2011, 18:08 GMT)

Without the DRS, it would have been given 'not out' anyway. If the system is honest enough to admit where it can go wrong, and gives a chance to be used where it is correct, I fail to see the bad side of it... Here we at least get a chance to correct it, where possible. How can no DRS be better? If someone feels that the inaccuracy is prevalent all over, I am sure ample testing was done -- won't it be as simple as taking a video of a delivery without a pad intervening and then feeding the data to the UDRS only till the point where an imaginary pad exists and see how accurately the system can predict the actual trajectory... is there anything more complex that an umpire does??

Posted by Muhammad on (March 2, 2011, 13:19 GMT)

Agreed. Review technology should be used for 1. whether the ball pitched in line 2. whether there is an inside edge 3. To check no-ball (which on-field umpire should check all the times) 4. whether there is an edge in case of caught behind (using snicko) 5. as a guide of where the ball is heading (and to be communicated to on-field umpires) BUT the replays should not be shown on giant screens as it embarrasses on-field umpires and ignites the crowd and players.

Posted by Vinayak on (March 2, 2011, 7:16 GMT)

Nothing wrong with the 2.5m rule. All this system is saying is: It's humans assisted by technology. Technology will have certain limits when chances for error by technology will be high. In such cases, rely on human judgement -- as-is process. If technology can help, use it. As simple as that. It's now just a matter of educating all the captains, and team members, and then to the cricket fans.. This has been succesfully implemented in NFL (american football). --> Humans 'assisted' by technology

Posted by Adrian on (March 2, 2011, 2:54 GMT)

Do a poll - how many people think that that arbitrary figure of 2.5 metres is fair and that it was the right decision NOT to reverse the Ian Bell decision. If the majority of supporters, players and even umpires say that it should have been reversed then there you have it - get rid of the arbitrary 2.5 metre thing. And while you are at it get rid of this huge grey area that gives the benefit of the doubt to the umpire. The benefit of the doubt should go to the batsman, not the umpire. Get rid of the greyness of UDRS so that it can be used properly.

Posted by Dummy4 on (March 1, 2011, 16:24 GMT)

i think bowling field of india is very very poor ..so india needs to improve in that field if india wants the w.c.

Posted by Libin on (March 1, 2011, 16:16 GMT)

UDRS would be inherently falwed if it cannot make a decision based on technology. Review systems in other sports like Tennis ( Hawkeye is the same technology used there ) give a clear Out/Not Out answer, even if the margin is in milli meters. How often do you see line calls with balls just grazing the line by 1 mm and everybody accepts it. The review system doesnt go back to the chair umpire in such cases and say, You take the call cos I'm not competent enough. Why use a review system which you know is flawed. Stop using it for LBW ball tracking. The umpire made a call, stick to it. You can still use the system to see where the ball pitched or if you got an inside edge, but dont use tracking to see if a ball will hit the stumps - till you can perfect it. Sachin and Dhoni are not average everyplace morons to oppose it without rhyme or reason. Try and read both sides of the story to see what is what.

Posted by Libin on (March 1, 2011, 15:44 GMT)

@Cameron @gothetaniwha - Not much reason to complain if we were not using UDRS. But the decision review system, what it actually did was - Showed you slow motion replays of the ball hitting the pad, pitching in line and going on to hit middle, tracked the ball the rest of the distance and showed it hitting the stumps, then said since the distance was more than 2.5 mtrs, what is displayed might just be faulty so you cant trust me, take your own decision, But hey this will count as an unsuccessful challenge. If you cant take its word at 2.5 mts , whats the gaurantee its working correctly at 2.45 mtrs? Whats the point of a review system, which can only show you replays, but not powerful to overturn a wrong decision? Thats the question. It is about questioning the system we're using and not about how badly bowlers bowled or anything. Those were just environmental variables, and you could replace India with Canada and bowling with batting, but the question still remains..

Posted by 123kidd on (March 1, 2011, 14:52 GMT)

@Cameron_petie: UDRS was introduced to rule out any human decision making error's. But what is the point if UDRS is also supporting the human error's.

Posted by Dummy4 on (March 1, 2011, 14:45 GMT)

i don't think the loss can be attributed to that decision. if such a rule exists, it is accountable to everyone and one day even india might draw its favour. but i think india was ready to lose the match once strauss began to play fluently. it showed on the field too. also msd did not respond right throughout england's innings.

Posted by Big on (March 1, 2011, 13:39 GMT)

Its not a matter of knowing or not knowing the rule - even batsmen had no clue about the rule. This incident also proves that UDRS is un-reliable - as the ground umpires decision stood due to 2.5m. It appears that the UDRS only works in a perfect scenario and when certain conditions are met. Why have a technology and enforce it when it clearly has flaws. I am with India on this, unless proven that it works all the time, UDRS is unreliable and should be avoided. It will definitely make anyone angry if the decision has a big impact on the match results in a world cup. Dhoni at least did not throw anything and break TV now, did he?

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