Referrals cut for Windies Test series
The regulations for the referral of umpiring decisions during the West Indies-England Test series have been tightened by the International Cricket Council.
The world’s governing body has been trialling a system over the last six months whereby players can ask for decisions made by on-field umpires to be referred to the TV official.
Teams have previously been allowed three unsuccessful appeals per innings, but that has been reduced to two for England’s four Tests in the West Indies, the first of which gets under way in Jamaica next Wednesday.
The changes come on the back of feedback from players and match officials and, if successful in the Caribbean, will be applied during Australia’s tour of South Africa starting next month.
The ICC will review the trial after that series, and the possibility of implementing it in all Tests and ODIs will be discussed by its cricket committee in May.
“The umpire decision review system trial has so far received mostly positive feedback from players and officials but we want to get it right before we consider applying it to international cricket on a permanent basis,” said ICC chief executive Haroon Lorgat.
“That is why we have made this refinement to it. It has become clear during the trial so far that three unsuccessful reviews per innings is too many as there is potential there for frivolous or unnecessary reviews to be made by one side or the other.”
The trial was launched for India's tour of Sri Lanka last summer and was also employed during New Zealand's home series against West Indies before Christmas.
The system allows appeals only to be made by the batsman adjudged out or the captain of the fielding side, by signalling a ‘T’ with his hands.
The third umpire will use TV footage of the incident to pass fact-based information back to the on-field umpire, who must then decide to stand by his original decision or reverse it.