Australia all-rounder Mitchell Marsh’s LBW dismissal on Day 5 of the first Test against South Africa is having a controversial debate, questioning the Umpire Decision Review System (DRS). The right-hander was adjudged leg before off a full ball that appeared to swing excessively down the leg side.
The ball ricocheted onto the bat after contact with the pad and it could’ve even resulted in him caught if the bowler Kagiso Rabada was closer to the ball. But that’s another story. South Africa captain Faf du Plessis asked for a review and all three criteria turned out to be in favor of the bowling team.
The ball delivered from wide of the crease was swinging down in the air and in-line with the stumps struck toe-first, then onto the pad. There needs to be a conclusive evidence to overturn the on-field decision and that means more than 50% of the ball needs to hit the leg-stump under the new DRS protocol (earlier it has to hit the middle of leg-stump).
The ICC official press release on the DRS rule change
“For a Not Out decision to be overturned, more than half the ball now has to be impacting the pad within a zone bordered by the outside of off and leg stumps (formerly the centre of off and leg stumps), and the ball needs to be hitting the stumps within a zone bordered by the outside of off and leg stumps and the bottom of the bails (formerly the centre of off and leg stumps, and the bottom of the bails).”
By this tweak that came into effect on September 22, there’s a better chance of fielding sides getting more LBW decisions in their favor.
Every time the BCCI took a negative stand on DRS, the world blamed the decision to be stubborn and ridiculed the board and former Test captain MS Dhoni for their policy towards the technology. But when the players from other countries complain about the review system, it’s seen as a genuine complaint.
But the question here has to be the ball tracker that seems to have wrongly predicted the trajectory to show the ball hitting the stumps.
Australia’s Mitchell Johnson tweeted:
Just saw Mitch Marsh’s lbw…. what a crock of $&@! DRS system = Failure.
— Mitchell Johnson (@MitchJohnson398) November 7, 2016
Former Australia captain Michael Clarke also stood against the ball tracker prediction.
“I was certain that was missing the stumps,” Clarke said on Wide World of Sports. “When you look at that replay, I thought it was definitely swinging too far and missing the leg stump. He’ll be really disappointed with that. It has clipped his toe, then clipped his pad, and then got onto the bat. But what I don’t agree with is the line of the delivery once the ball hits him on the toe. I believe the line of that delivery is going down and missing leg stump,” he said.
Another former skipper Mark Taylor who was serving the ICC Cricket Committee until May 2016 said the ball seemed to be missing the stumps.
“I’ve got to say, sitting at the back of the commentary box, I thought Mitchell Marsh would be fine to be totally honest,” Taylor said on Channel 9. “He was given not out so the technology has to prove he was definitely out to overturn the decision.
“50 percent of that ball has to hit at least the outside of the stump. That’s been moved – it used to be the middle of the stump.
“That looks to me at best it is going to clip the stumps.
“I think he’s very unlucky. The way the ball impacted him on the half volley, it looked to me like the ball straightened rather than kept going on it’s original angle,” he added.
Drs has gone blind…missing leg stump obviously…no wonder the Indians dislike it
— jim maxwell (@jimmaxcricket) November 7, 2016