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May 10, 2014
The IPL has stood down umpire Sanjay Hazare from the match officials panel for the rest of the tournament.
There has been no specific reason provided for the decision, but Hazare had erroneously shot down a run-out appeal against Kevin Pietersen without referring to the third umpire when Delhi Daredevils hosted Rajasthan Royals on May 3. The batsman was out of his crease.
IPL chairman Ranjib Biswal indicated there was a strong case for Hazare's removal. "He has been removed. There are many reasons," Biswal told ESPNcricinfo. It is understood that the message was communicated to Hazare by BCCI operations manager MV Sridhar.
In the seventh over, Pietersen was sent back when he sought a leg bye and wicketkeeper Sanju Samson found his target. TV replays clearly showed the Daredevils captain was well short of his ground, but astonishingly Hazare, who was standing at square leg, turned down the appeal.
Both Shane Watson, Royals' captain, and Rajat Bhatia, the bowler, were told by Hazare that Pietersen had reached the safety of his crease. "I was confident that he made his ground," Hazare told ESPNcricinfo. "I was very clear about that. And hence I did not refer to the third umpire."
It could not be confirmed whether Royals had lodged a complaint. According to Hazare he was asked by the match referee about the incident later. "I told him the same thing," he said. "It was a human error. Once I had made the decision I could not correct it."
Hazare later officiated as the third umpire when Mumbai Indians faced Royal Challengers Bangalore at the Wankhede Stadium. That, it turned out, was his last game in the tournament.
Nagraj Gollapudi is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfoFeeds: Nagraj Gollapudi
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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