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An Indian making the most of life in sports-crazed Melbourne

Far Pavilions

Giving umpires a break

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Much has been written on how the new rules with soccer-style substitutions will improve or worsen the one-day game. The only change that ICC has come up with on umpiring is to have additional technology aids to help the umpires get more decisions right. Srinivas, a friend and reader of this blog, writes in:

I heard something interesting during the recent India-Pakistan series coverage on Fourth Umpire (the much maligned program in Doordarshan hosted by Charu Sharma and Srikanth, not the new blog that Rahul Bhatia has introduced his readers to). An idea came from a smart Indian cricket fan during the discussion. “Except for New Zealand and England where the weather is mostly cool, umpires are stressed due to the heat and the stressful situations of the game. There are instances when umpires have displayed poor form from one match to another or within 5 days of a test match. Why can't umpires work as a team? Perhaps, for a test match, we could have a team of four umpires who rotate every session. This can also include the third umpire.”

Simon Taufel and Billy Bowden have been unhappy with technology interventions diminishing their role in the game. Perhaps they will be happier to have more personnel from their fraternity assisting them. To me this at least ensures that the chance of cricketers and cricket fans being anguished by Bucknor-like, decisions is likely to be reduced that bit more.