House of Howlers
A raft of glaring umpiring decisions in the 2018 CPL has sparked the DRS debate again. ESPNcricinfo lists the top-ten bloopers from the season
The St Lucia Stars opener fell victim to arguably one of the worst lbw decisions ever, when he was hit outside the line of off stump, while gloving a reverse-sweep. Instead of supporting Imran Tahir's appeal, wicketkeeper Luke Ronchi set off after the ball that trickled behind point. Perhaps he knew it would be missing the stumps, but umpire Nigel Duguid raised his finger to leave Warner stunned and Tahir wheeling away in celebration.
In that same game at Providence, Guyana Amazon Warriors wicketkeeper-batsman Luke Ronchi was also adjudged lbw, when umpire Dungid erred again. Ronchi missed a pull against a short arm ball from left-arm spinner Mark Chapman, and copped it on the thigh. Though the ball seemed to be heading down leg, Duguid thought otherwise, and Ronchi was on his way.
Just as Darren Bravo and Colin Munro were taking charge of Trinbago Knight Riders' chase of 183, Jamaica Tallawahs' Adam Zampa let rip a non-turner that fizzed past Bravo's sweep and pinned him in front of middle. The ball would have crashed into middle and leg, but the umpire shot down the appeal. Bravo went onto cart a pair of sixes, which helped TKR secure a last-gasp chase.
Ben Cutting first hit the front pad of Glenn Phillips with a swinging yorker and then had it ricocheting onto his back pad. Replays indicated the ball had pitched outside leg, but Cutting's appeal was upheld.
The Tallawahs opener was left fuming again, when he was given out caught-behind even though he did not nick a sharp legbreak from Barbados Tridents' Steven Smith. When Phillips saw a short ball turn and bounce outside off, he went on the back foot to work it away towards the leg side but missed by a long way. Umpire Shaun George, though, did not spot it, and raised his finger.
Trinbago Knight Riders' new-ball fast bowler Ali Khan had been giving fits to St Lucia Stars opener Andre Fletcher in the opening match of the season. Having been dropped in the first over, Fletcher received another let-off when a yorker struck him flush on the toe in front of middle stump but was given erroneously as a run after the ball ricocheted through the slips. It wound up not costing much, as Fletcher fell to a slower ball later in the over, and TKR cantered to a resounding win.
The Universe Boss scored 86 out of a total of 146 for St Kitts & Nevis Patriots in the second match of the season against Guyana Amazon Warriors, but his innings really should have been done in the second over. Attempting to sweep the offspin of Chris Green, Gayle missed and was struck plumb in front. But umpire Duguid saw it differently. Replays showed the ball was crashing into the stumps. Amazon Warriors prevailed in the end despite Gayle's fortuitous innings.
As part of a trend of poor decisions involving the sweep, Lynn's inside edge onto the pads went undetected by umpire Gregory Brathwaite. The error didn't matter much in the end, thanks to a mind-boggling assault by Darren Bravo that helped take TKR home
Even before Stars left-arm spinner Kavem Hodge had sent a full ball outside off, Patriots batsman King jumped a fair way across his stumps, lost his balance, and did not connect with a slog-sweep. Despite being struck outside the line, King was given out lbw. Another sweep. Another poor umpiring decision.
The clash between St Lucia Stars and St Kitts & Nevis Patriots at Gros Islet was the shortest-ever 20-overs-a-side CPL match, but it still had room for another umpiring blunder. And this time, Hodge was the victim. When Carlos Brathwaite found extra bounce and got a length ball to zip away outside off, Hodge reached out for the ball with his feet pinned to the crease and was beaten. Still, he was given out caught behind - a bizarre decision, which left the Stars captain Kieron Pollard flinging his hands in utter shock.