|Even the Best err!
Recently, the International Cricket Council (ICC) had appointed a panel of eight (8) umpires to serve on their elite panel.
The panel with effect from April 2002 will officiate in all future Test matches.
Among the eight umpires we find Sri Lankas Asoka de Silva who is at present officiating in the New Zealand-England series being played in New Zealand.
The First Test between the two nations is being played in Christchurch and at the end of the day three (Friday March 15) England had declared their second innings at a mammoth 468 for 6 and left the Kiwis with a daunting task of scoring over 500 runs for victory on the final two days.
However, the match had its share of umpiring bloomers as reported by The Daily Telegraphs Martin Johnson and Mark Nicholas in Christchurch on March 14.
What Johnsons report contained:
Hussain, who struck 14 boundaries in his 325-minute vigil, had his moments of luck, but England as a whole were not well served by some of the umpiring, and Mark Ramprakash was given out caught off the thigh by a Sri Lankan Asoka de Silva who has just aspired to international crickets newly appointed "elite" panel. This sort of thing will probably hasten the inevitable day when umpires are all but replaced by electronic technology, a matter up for discussion at an International Cricket Council committee meeting this weekend.
Asoka also gave, just as hopelessly, the lbw decision which led to Hussain being last out shortly before the close, while the home umpire, Billy Bowden, saw off Andrew Caddick with his trademark raising of a finger so crooked that it is either a gimmick, or the result of some terminal deformity.
What Nicholas reported:
At lunch England had scored 89 from 26 overs. Vaughan had gone to another cracking delivery from Cairns and Graham Thorpe too, caught at slip driving at Drum. But captain courageous remained, narrow-eyed and unflinching.
With Mark Ramprakash, Husain calmly built bricks again until Ramprakash was on the wrong end of a shocker from umpire Asoka de Silva. (R. L. F.)
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