The umpiring in the ongoing World Test Championship final, involving on-field umpire Richard Illingworth, left fans in an intense debate, which also saw former cricketer Virender Sehwag voice his opinion.
The incident took place in the second session of Day 2, moments after Cheteshwar Pujara's dismissal, when India skipper Virat Kohli tried to nudge a delivery going down the leg-side. As the ball went past the bat and settled in the wicketkeeper's gloves, bowler Trent Boult went for a huge caught-behind appeal, promting his skipper Kane Williamson to take a review. However, before the Kiwis could come up to a decision, time ran out and it felt the proceedings would continue without any delay.
But what followed next added confusion in the middle, forcing Kohli to have a chat with umpire Illingworth, and soon former India cricketer Sehwag also took to Twitter to drop his view.
The TV umpire was involved despite Williamson not taking a review and it was later clarified by the commentators that an umpire review was taken. However, what did create a buzz online was UltraEdge being monitored despite it being an umpire review.
TV replay confirmed that there was no connection between the bat and the ball and Kohli remained in the middle, which brought the much-needed respite to Indian fans, considering Pujara was trapped LBW in the same over.
Meanwhile, Sehwag took to Twitter and wrote: "Funny umpiring there with Virat. No decision given by the umpire and it automatically became a review."
Funny umpiring there with Virat.
No decision given by the umpire and it automatically became a review.
Tuning in to the Women’s test match for the time being , hoping for Harman and Punam to save the Test match.
— Virender Sehwag (@virendersehwag) June 19, 2021
Here is what the rule says:
Playing Conditions on Umpire's referral. TV umpire was right to cross-check Ultra Edge but think confusion was caused by the fact Illingworth did not seem to have made any onfield decision/soft signal, which gave the impression that it was a review by Williamson.#WTCFinal2021 pic.twitter.com/4u9LUzjz9f
— Deepu Narayanan (@deeputalks) June 19, 2021
Meanwhile, a set of new rules have been implemented for the WTC final, which came into effect with the ongoing ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup Super League series between Bangladesh and Sri Lanka:
Short Runs – The Third Umpire will automatically review any call of a ‘short run’ by the On-field Umpire and communicate the decision to the On-field Umpire prior to the next ball being bowled.
Player Reviews – The fielding captain or the dismissed batsman may confirm with the Umpire whether a genuine attempt has been made to play the ball prior to deciding whether to initiate a player review for LBW.
DRS Reviews – For LBW reviews, the height margin of the Wicket Zone has been lifted to the top of the stumps to ensure the same Umpire’s Call margin around the stumps for both height and width.
The match so far
After inviting India to bat first, openers Shubman Gill and Rohit Sharma provided India with a good start but were soon dismissed after stitching a 50-plus opening partnership.
In the second session of the day, India lost one more wicket in the form of Pujara and are currently batting at 119/3 with Kohli and his deputy Ajinkya Rahane in the middle.