ICC elite umpire Kumar Dharmasena has accepted his folly after awarded England six runs from an overthrow in the last over of the recently held ICC World Cup 2019.
The incident took place on July 14 (Sunday) when Ben Stokes played a ball on the on-side. It eventually saw Martin Guptill rushing in to collect the ball. Guptill, who has a strong arm, threw the ball at striker’s end which accidentally deflected off Stokes’ bat to cross the boundary ropes. Thus, Dharmasena had signalled six instead of award five to hosts.
Thus, Kiwis had their hands on their hips with skipper Kane Williamson wearing a wry smile on his face.
Immediately, after Stokes recovered while diving full-length to make it to the crease straightaway apologises to the opponents that he did not deliberately touch the ball.
Kumar Dharmasena consults leg-umpire before his decision:
The former Sri Lankan cricketer Dharmasena maintained it should have been five runs rather than six.
Pertinently, when Guptill threw the ball at wicketkeeper’s end, Stokes and Adil Rashid were yet to go past each other. Had that happened it would have been six runs consider two scored while running between the wickets.
Interestingly, three balls later when Stokes pushed Mark Wood for a couple, but eventually failed to do so, before England end up scoring what actually New Zealand had posted in the first innings (242).
While speaking to the Sunday Times, Dharmasena had defended himself. While officiating the final against Marais Erasmus, Dharmasena made a blunder by missing out that batsmen had not crossed when the ball ricochet of the bat for a four.
“I agree that there was an error of judgement when I see it on TV replays now,” Dharmasena said.
Batting first the Black Caps managed 242 for eight. Whereas, the Three Lions were all-out at the same score when Trent Boult found Wood well short of his crease at the non-striker’s end. Thus, the game went into the Super Over which eventually stunned one and all as both teams end up scoring an equal amount of runs.
Ultimately, in the dramatic finale, hosts lift their maiden World Cup title on the virtue of more boundaries than the Kiwis.
Kumar Dharmasena won’t regret his decision at Lord’s:
He also maintained that he wouldn’t regret the decision. He cited that they did not have a luxury of TV replays. Dharmasena revealed that he had consulted Erasmus before making a decision. Besides, he reiterated that officials, including match referee, Ranjan Madugalle heard the conversation.
“But we did not have the luxury of TV replays at the ground. And I do not regret the decision I made. So, I did consult the leg umpire (Erasmus) through the communication system which is heard by all other umpires and the match referee. While they cannot check TV replays, they all confirmed that the batsmen have completed the second run. This is when I made my decision,” he concluded.
Soon after the final, former umpire, Simon Taufel had deemed it as a ‘mistake’.