Bangladesh in Sri Lanka, 2013
Bangladesh's Twenty20 loss raises questions about umpiring
01 April 2013
Bangladesh ended their Sri Lanka tour with a fighting 17 run
loss against the hosts at Pallekelle International Stadium at Kandy today. Bangladesh invited Sri Lanka after winning the
toss and the hosts piled up 198 for 5 in 20 overs against an ill disciplined
Bangladesh attack. However, it would be fair to say that the outcome of the
match was largely decided by some inept umpiring decisions which have again
raised the importance of neutral umpires in all international matches.
Both on-field umpires showed complete disregard to the
spirit of the game as they handed out one after another error strewn decisions;
not surprisingly all of them went against the visitors. Sri Lanka total was
boosted by some helpful umpiring decisions as the hero of Sri Lanka innings
Kusal Perera was out first ball of the match and Angelo Mathews was truck plumb
in font in the 15th over before the late flourish, but both of them
were declared not out. However the umpires changed their allegiance from the
batsmen to the bowlers when Bangladesh came onto bat.
Shamsur Rahman was outside the popping crease in the first
over of the chase and the ball would have sailed well over stumps, and Ashraful
was hit outside leg stump in the 8th Over of Bangladesh innings;
this time both of them were given out. Bangladesh were hard done by both
decisions, but Ashraful’s one was a rank poor decision even if it was backyard
cricket match. Four mistakes at crucial junctures of the game show the umpires
are not simply fit for purpose or wholly biased.
Despite the unhelpful officiating, Bangladesh fought
admirably and was well on course to challenge the total. However, two quick
wickets in the 15th over of Bangladesh innings derailed the chase as
both set batsmen, Mushfiq and Mahmudullah, fell to the spin bowling of Suchitra
Senanayake. Some late hitting by Mominul
Haque could only reduce the margin of defeat who did not have enough support at
the other end to seriously challenge the Sri Lankan total.