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India-South Africa Series

No control over DRS, says host broadcaster about review row



Photo: courtesy

|| AFP ||

Host broadcaster SuperSport said on Friday it had no control over the Decision Review System (DRS) used in the Test series between South Africa and India.

In a brief statement issued to AFP, the broadcaster said: "SuperSport notes comments made by certain members of the Indian cricket team.

"Hawk-Eye is an independent service provider, approved by the ICC and their technology has been accepted for many years as an integral part of DRS.

"SuperSport does not have any control over the Hawk-Eye technology."

Members of the Indian team reacted angrily on Thursday when a leg before wicket decision against South African captain Dean Elgar was overturned on review.

Several Indian players were heard complaining about the decision and there appeared to be suggestions the broadcaster was manipulating the technology.

Television viewers heard several players complaining within range of the stump microphone after what seemed a straightforward leg before wicket decision was reversed.

A still picture of the moment of impact showed the ball from off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin hitting Elgar below the knee roll of his front pad, in line with the stumps. 

He had, however, pushed forward and was well outside the batting crease. The ball tracking technology showed it was bouncing just above the stumps.

India captain Virat Kohli went up to the stump microphone at the end of the over and reportedly shouted: "Focus on your team while they shine the ball. Not just the opposition. Trying to catch the opposition all the time."

The relevance to the decision was not obvious but Kohli was probably referring to the "Sandpapergate" controversy when host broadcaster SuperSport's cameras caught Australia's Cameron Bancroft using sandpaper on the ball during a Test at Newlands in 2018.

Indian vice-captain KL Rahul and Ashwin both appeared to accuse SuperSport of influencing the ball-tracking device.

Rahul was heard to say, "The whole country is playing against 11 guys."

Ashwin, who had celebrated what he thought was a vital breakthrough, said, "You should find better ways to win, SuperSport."

There has been no indication yet from match referee Andy Pycroft and the International Cricket Council whether any disciplinary action will be taken against Indian captain Virat Kohli, vice-captain KL Rahul and bowler Ravichandran Ashwin, whose voices were heard through the stump microphone.