Johannesburg: Former South African cricket chief Ali Bacher disclosed that the visiting Indian team of 1992 under Mohammed Azharuddin was a bit wary when TV umpire was first introduced in cricket between in the Test series between the two countries.
Sachin Tendulkar was the first victim of a TV umpire decision after it was introduced in November 1992 in the first Test at Kingsmead at Durban and now the system has become the norm in international cricket.
“We had to convince the Indians to go along with the plan. My board and the South African side were all for it, but Mohammad Azharuddin, the Indian captain, and their team manager were a little wary of it,” Bacher said.
“Clive Lloyd was the match referee for the series, so I asked him to have a chat with them. Let’s just say he ‘leaned’ on them a bit,” he told ‘The Star’ while talking about the call of using technology in football after umpiring controversies in the FIFA World Cup which ended here last night.
Bacher said the umpire at the time, Steve Bucknor, who had also earlier been a FIFA referee, also opposed the concept initially.
“(Bucknor) said straight up he didn’t like it, but in the next Test at the Wanderers, he gave Jonty Rhodes not out after an appeal by the Indians. Jonty was on 28 at the time and eventually scored 91. We had been in a lot of trouble in the first innings and Jonty’s knock saved South Africa.
“Steve later saw the replay back at his hotel and he told me he was horrified when he saw Jonty should have been out. He had thought he was well in. To his credit (Bucknor) came to a press conference the next day and said the new system clearly worked. That was the key moment for using the technology in sport,” Bacher said.
“Technology has been a force for good in cricket, and I think it can be ion football too,” he added.