A distance of 22 yards and a time frame of few seconds is what an umpire gets when a game of cricket is going on. Imagine at what speed are the umpires expected to make a decision? After all the calculations, what would be the probability of being correct always? As advanced technology came into being, the game got upgraded too.
One of the most controversial inclusions was the Decision Review System (DRS) or the Umpire Decision Review System (UDRS). While the technology based system aims at helping umpires from making mistakes and giving wrong decisions, it hasn’t been 100% reliable. The system was implemented in a Test series between India and Sri Lanka in 2008. In the same year, India opposed the system as few decisions went against the team. Inaccurate predictions from the hawk-eye and ball tracking system made it difficult to maintain a consistency when it came to making decisions.
With slight differences in terms of where was the impact of the ball, decisions varied and on-field call by the umpire seemed more reliable. The next crucial decision that I can recall was of Ian Bell. The 2.5-metre rule led to two contrasting decisions. Elton Chigumbura of Zimbabwe was given out in the match against New Zealand while Ian Bell was given not out in the game against India. Instances like these made India opt out for DRS whenever they were involved in a series.
On the other hand, there were numerous instances when the Indian would have benefitted had the system been in place. Indian Test Captain Virat Kohli said that the ball-tracking system and hawk-eye need to be improved. “There are some areas (that) can be discussed or debated on. Especially ball-tracking and Hawk-Eye. Once it is in place, and up and running, then we can think of the grey areas,” he said in an interview with Indian Express.
WATCH: Ian Bell’s controversial decision
(Video Courtesy: YouTube.com/Max Madrasi)
And Kohli’s prayers were answered. England’s tour of India from November-February will see a new and improved version of DRS that will be implemented on a trial basis. The new version will have ultra-motion cameras that will help in calculating the predictive path for tracking the ball. It will also have an ultra-edge feature that will help in estimating the frame of impact.
BCCI President Anurag Thakur said that they are willing to implement the improved technology for the upcoming series against England. “We are happy to note that Hawkeye has institutionalised all the recommendations made by BCCI, and we confirm that this improved version of DRS will be used on a trial basis during the forthcoming series against England and based on the performance of the system and the feedback that we will receive, further continuation in forthcoming series will be decided,” he said in the statement.
England will play five Tests, three ODIs and three T20s against India.