Asia Cup Blog

Is India’s stubborn stance against the UDRS coming back to haunt them?

Monday, August 23, 2021
Shirin Sadikot

The result of Sunday’s tri-series game was a classic combination of poor umpiring, indiscreet Indian batting and intelligent, disciplined Lankan bowling. While the quality of batting and bowling can be considered as part and parcel of the game, it was the five shocking decisions made by the umpires that caught everyone’s eye.

India were at the receiving end on four of those occasions as they lost the wickets of Sehwag, Karthik, Raina and Yuvraj to the blunders of the men in white coats. The situation is a bit ironical, given India’s strong stance against the UDRS, a system devised precisely to get rid of such anomalies.

Sri Lankan skipper Kumar Sangakkara, who has time and again put his weight behind the controversial review system, urging the ICC to make it mandatory, didn’t waste this opportunity to reiterate his stance.

"Well, sometimes decisions work for you and sometimes they are against you. But if everything has to be fair, use technology and make it even.

"The ICC should make technology compulsory now because if some sides are using it and some series we are playing without technology I don't think that is right. Everyone should use technology. If it is a must,” Said Sangakkara.

India bore the brunt of some iffy decisions even in the Tests that preceded the tri-series, and every time that happened, the commentators were quick to remind everyone that it was the BCCI who chose not to have the review system in place.

And after Sunday’s match, Sangakkara, a shrewd character and a lawyer by profession, was quick to hit the hammer when the iron was at its hottest.

“Even before the Test series we have been for DRS and the only reason I believe why we did not have referral system throughout the Test series and through this series was because India did not want DRS,” he said.

Sangakkara’s Indian counterpart, MS Dhoni, however, has maintained the technology must be used only if it is fool-proof, which at present, the UDRS is not. Batting maestro Sachin Tendulkar too has come out and made his dissatisfaction over the system clear, saying he prefers the Hot-spot over the UDRS.

The BCCI explained their indifference towards the system saying it is expensive and not 100 per cent accurate. Though the contentious system has its detractors in other parts of the world as well, there are more people in favour of the technology than against it.

So, for how long can the BCCI flex its financial muscles to have things their way? Actually, after suffering the severe consequences of not having the UDRS in place, the question is, are they having it their way at all?

Shouldn’t the BCCI keep their mighty ego aside and just give the poor UDRS a chance? After all, as the superpower of the cricketing world, it’s India’s responsibility to make sure they co-operate with the ICC in their attempt to make the game bigger and better. And the fact that the chances of the Indian batsmen – who are more often than not the victims of poor umpiring decisions – being given out wrongly will reduce, wont harm the team’s cause either.

What do you think? Have your say here….