The Base Are The Umpires
The Umpires are like the teachers of a school taking vital calls of the kids with regulating the rules and regulations. That finger of an umpire is so vital in the life of a Cricket player. The two-gentleman standing under the heat of Chennai or the cool chilly weather of Wellington is having their concentrations bang on the game from its beginning to end. Although, I have found out some people publicly or socially has shown disrespect to those characters.
In a high pressurized game specially in these modern days with the introduction of DRS and technology, all the wrong decisions when flashed out in the giant screen pull off so many critics all over the world. With due respect, twenty years back, whether it’s Steve Bucknor who for countless times had adjusted Sachin out in wrong decisions hadn’t found it too tough to cope up wit the game.
The of-late Incidents
The of late situations have painted some picture. Yes, I know that decision of umpire Virender Sharma to Virat Kohli during the 2nd Mumbai Test in 2021 wasn’t right even after watching many replays. But, just take a little back seat from the ball; it looked so close in naked eyes as both bat and pad are too close to each other. Any regular cricket fan or someone who had played the game knows the power of umpire’s call. The moment on-field umpire gave it out, the TV official will always try to find way to back him; The inside edge looked so close between bat and pad though.
There is a huge list of posts that began to point fingers on V Sharma. But most of them sitting in their drawing room got it wrong too. Even the Mumbai crowds went a step ahead and booed the two gentlemen when they made their way into the field after Tea. Even in Kanpur during the drawn 1st Test, when Nitin Menon took both the sides off the field due to bad light specially on last day received some harsh noise from the fans.
English pacer Stuart Broad is one of the players known for the word “Celeb Appealing”. Few weeks ago, during a shield game, Australian Marnus Labuschagne did something like that where he bowled a ball which hit the batsman and he kept on running to celebrate without appealing as if the umpire had declared it out which wasn’t the case. The problem is now, all the young cricketers who look after Marnus as an ambassador of the game may not learn the right lesson.
There is nothing wrong about asking the umpire but at-least turn around and query respectfully, “Sir, what are you thinking.” This is not going to help the young kids. Players should play the game in right way and that’s not the right way at all.
You always want people to play the game hard and do their best to win their side but you shouldn’t run beyond the boundary. “Respect, I hear the word a lot.” Figured out veteran Mark Taylor during a show in Channel Nine. “But it’s not about saying the word; it’s about delivering or living it.” There is no such complication when someone shows disappointment and that’s natural specially in games without the DRS. But there is a fine line between disappointment and disrespect.
Umpires Know Better Than You
The same kind of incident occurred during the 2019 World Cup final when one of the best umpires, Kumar Dharmasena, a former ICC Umpire of the year, was found guilty for what everyone thought was a wrong decision. The explanation of the Sri-Lankan umpire didn’t receive enough public attention.
Dharmasena did explain that there was no way he could know where the two running batters contact and to the exact moment the fielder released the ball which went on for match winning couple of runs. The pundits kept on asking why didn’t he take help from the third umpire? The issue is that according to the playing conditions, the on-field umpires could not check the dismissals and boundary saves with the TV umpire. Nobody knew it except KD.
All the umpires try there best to officiate the game in the best possible way. But yes, they can differ. Someone keeps the teams sledging or doesn’t even think of slow-over rates. I can remember Chris Gaffney during the 2018 Australia and India Test series. Just when both captains, Tim Paine and Virat Kohli had gone beyond boundary in crossing the limit of verbal spat, he reminded them the status they share.
So, there are quite few days in the game of Cricket where the umpires, the gentlemen of the game who tirelessly in different conditions being fit are officiating the game, aren’t hit by criticism. Whether it’s a wrong decision or not getting the no-ball right; they always find one finger pointed on them. But, People forget the fact that without their services, the game is nothing without them- APPRECIATE THE UMPIRES.