The Investec Ashes 2013 July 16, 2013

ICC defends umpires, DRS


The ICC has defended the performance of the umpires and the DRS after criticism following the Trent Bridge Test between England and Australia, whilst also admitting to errors in cases involving Jonathan Trott and Stuart Broad.

The ICC has taken the unusual step of revealing its assessment of the umpires and the DRS analysis from the Test, arguing that the figures vindicate both. Some mitigation was provided for the errors that did occur, the ICC suggesting the "added intensity" of a first Ashes Test had increased pressure on the officials.

According to the ICC, the umpires made a total of 72 decisions, which is well above the average (49) for a DRS Test match. The umpiring team, made up of Aleem Dar, Kumar Dharmasena and Marais Erasmus, was assessed to have made seven errors during the match, out of which three were uncorrected decisions and four decisions corrected using the DRS.

As such, the correct decision percentage before reviews stood at 90.3% but climbed to 95.8% as a result of the use of the DRS. This represented an increase of 5.5% in correct decisions, which was the average increase from DRS Test matches in 2012-13.

The three decisions that were marked as uncorrected errors included one against Trott when a correct lbw decision (not out against the bowling of Mitchell Starc) was overturned. The others involved Broad, both the edge that carried to slip via Brad Haddin's gloves and a leg-before shout where he did not offer a stroke, but neither but these could be corrected as Australia had no reviews available.

"When coupled with the conditions, with reverse swing and spin playing an important role, and the added intensity of the first Ashes Test, it was a difficult match to umpire," read the ICC statement.

The ICC's chief executive, David Richardson, added: "The umpires did a good job under difficult conditions. This reflects the calibre of umpires Dar, Dharmasena and Erasmus who have consistently performed at a high level. Like the players, umpires can also have good and bad days but we all know that the umpire's decision, right or wrong, is final and must be accepted.

"While the ICC has complete faith in the ability of its umpires, our confidence in technology is also strengthened by the fact that there was an increase in the number of correct decisions in the Trent Bridge Test through the use of the DRS.

"Technology was introduced with the objective of eradicating the obvious umpiring errors, and to get as many correct decisions as possible. If it can help increase the correct decisions by 5.5 percent, then it is a good outcome, but we must continue to strive to improve umpiring and the performance of the DRS."

George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Ravi on July 19, 2013, 9:44 GMT

    Koshy Cherian says...... DRS is like setting a field for bad bowling. If the umpires made 2 howlers and the captain reviewed it, no more reviews. what will happen if the umpire makes more bad decision?

    Dude....., if howlers are reviewed and corrected then, they wont count. The 2 count is only for unsuccessful reviews so that the players dont review every ball and waste time. As long as the reviews are successful, they can make unlimited reviews, there is no limit. But once you make 2 unsuccessful reviews (which means the umpire was right), then you cant make more later in that innings. This will discourage players from reviewing each and every decision and they will do only if they are reasonably sure.

  • Dummy4 on July 18, 2013, 22:46 GMT

    DRS is like setting a field for bad bowling. If the umpires made 2 howlers and the captain reviewed it, no more reviews. what will happen if the umpire makes more bad decision?

  • Robert on July 18, 2013, 20:28 GMT

    @bobgarof. The reason it does not make sense to you is you have misunderstood what I said. I did not say hawk eye should be removed. It is being used wrong.

  • shankar on July 18, 2013, 16:56 GMT

    @Cohen, increasing the time is only going to promote "tactical", "lets-take-a-gamble" type of reviews. I say take out DRS completely from players' hands. Umpires are using it so well for noballs, run-outs. Just give the umpires complete freedom regarding LBWs, nicks etc. All this 2-review thing is nonsense. What is there are 20 howlers in a game and the teams have no reviews left? Just give full freedom to umpires. I doubt all our posts are even read by anyone concerned (ICC, commentators, players,...)

  • Dummy4 on July 18, 2013, 16:01 GMT

    I also believe the rush of deciding whether or not to refer the decision or not could be one reason for many wrong referrals. From the time of the appeal to referring is often too rushed, the time limit should probably be increased which could possibly allow the team to discuss whether to refer or not...

  • Azhar on July 18, 2013, 13:49 GMT

    In my opinion, the number of DRS appeals allowed to the teams should be increased from the current 2 to at least 5 per innings. It will certainly help increase the number of correct decisions.

  • shankar on July 18, 2013, 11:16 GMT

    @Andre117, your suggestion of "give the TV umpire the option to stop the game" is even worse than DRS. If the TV umpire has the option to stop the game, then it will further kill the spontaneity of the game. After every decision, the players would be holding their breaths, just wondering if the TV umpire is going to stop the game. DRS is good. Give unlimited reviews to players. But, penalize the team 5 runs that uses it incorrectly. That way, the teams will use DRS when they know they are 100% certain that umpire made the mistake. It will also stop the abusive "tactical" use of DRS.

  • shankar on July 18, 2013, 11:10 GMT

    @H_Z_O, that is why I am advocating that LBW must be taken out of players' hands COMPLETELY. Only in case of edges, should a batsman be allowed to review, and penalized 5 runs if reviewed incorrectly. Why should a batsman be allowed to challenge umpires calls, if he is himself not 100% sure that the umpire made the wrong call? Just freaking kills the game for 5 minutes. There is no value addition to cricket by challenging the ball's trajectory. It is promoting dissent against umpires. Not good. If you have edged the ball, then of course you can challenge the umpire. I agree, Root challenged for the right reasons.

  • H on July 18, 2013, 10:50 GMT

    @coldcoffee123 Root's issue was he hit it. Tough to be sure whether it was after or before the ball struck the pad. Don't blame him reviewing it. Had nothing to do with the pitch map or HawkEye.

  • shankar on July 18, 2013, 10:42 GMT

    Please get rid of the lbw replays with the blue strip and the ball's trajectory. Cricket does not need this. After every lbw decision, the commentators start talking about, line, pitch, height blah blah. Just stop this nonsense and enjoy the moment, as Gilchrist has also advocated. It is as obnoxious as hearing Aussies talk about team culture, environment, group dynamics, standards, homework blah blah. The umpire makes the lbw decision, accept it, live with it. Root reviewed the decision and bloody stopped the game dead on for 4 minutes.