London: England captain Andrew Strauss has said that he remains sceptical about the use of the review system that allows cricketers to challenge umpiring decisions.
It is a concern shared by his teammates who would prefer not to be substitute umpires and forced to make snap judgments about whether an opponent is ‘in’ or ‘out’.
The review system has polarised opinion, with India opposed to its use and many cricket lovers fearing its long-term impact will be to diminish respect for all umpires.
Advocates say it has increased the number of correct decisions from 93 per cent to 97 per cent, and the International Cricket Council has this week authorised an expansion of the review system to one-day internationals, a newspaper reports.
“I was never a big fan of it when it came in. I didn’t like the fact that players would be involved in the decision-making process,” Strauss said.
“We have all got more used to it and generally we are getting more decisions right as a result - and that is a good thing. But there is still the argument that umpires could be allowed to ask for reviews - and not have the players involved in the process,” he said.
“Over time these things will be tinkered with. We have to play within the parameters that are set now. While the system is as it is, we have to be smart in deciding which ones to review,” Strauss said.
Clearly, England would prefer a re-evaluation of the system, a feeling only reinforced by events during the opening Ashes Test in Brisbane.
Each team has two referrals in an innings. These are kept if a successful challenge is made, but lost if the challenge is declared wrong.