Hot-Spot hitting umpires’ confidence: Hair, Boycott

Last Updated: Thursday, January 6, 2011 - 12:02

Melbourne: Controversial ex-umpire Darrell Hair and former England batsman Geoffrey Boycott feel the confidence level of on-field officials will plummet if technology like Hot-Spot is used in deciding close dismissals.

In the ongoing Ashes Test between England and Australia during which Ian Bell was first adjudged out caught behind by on-field umpire Aleem Dar before his seemingly correct decision was overturned after a referral.

Hair said despite the fact that there was no conclusive evidence to prove that Dar’s initial decision was incorrect, the technology shook his confidence.

“...in the end I don’t know why Aleem changed his decision, he should have stuck with it,” Hair said.

“He’s heard something and nothing showed up on the technology to say he was wrong. He must have talked himself out of it. Something like this was always going to happen, umpires would lose confidence in their own ability and start second-guessing themselves. It must be draining standing there and saying ‘out’ or ‘not out’,” he was quoted as saying by ‘The Daily Telegraph’.

Echoping the view, Boycott said technology is meant to ensure accuracy and not give players a chance to get away with “borderline calls”.

“The object of the DRS is to correct bad decisions. It’s not there for players to take a chance with borderline calls, and just hope they get away with something. In my opinion, Ian Bell was out. The umpire from 22 yards away made an instant decision,” he said.

“When I saw the replay I couldn’t see any evidence that the ball had hit the pad or the body. The bat didn’t hit the pad either, so if the umpire heard a noise, it could only be because he had got a nick,” he added.

Boycott said Hot-Spot can never be relied upon to be completely correct.

“I couldn’t see any reason not to go with the on-field umpire. I’ve never said Hot-Spot is one-hundred per cent infallible,” he said.

“It should only be an aid to help the umpires make the correct decision, not the decisive factor in itself. In this instance, Bell got away with one. Because five minutes later – it takes that long to set it up --Snickometer said he nicked it,” he added.

But Boycott still felt that the Decision Review System should stay as it does help cut down errors.

“The people who denigrate the DRS system are the ones looking for perfection. It’s never going to happen and they must get that into their heads.

“Without technology, there would be even worse glaring errors. Cook, in particular, has been saved from at least two wrong “out” decisions during the series by technology. It’s been shown by ICC statistics that using the DRS has given more correct decisions than before its use,” he explained.

PTI



First Published: Thursday, January 6, 2011 - 00:00

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