Mark Waugh couldn’t believe his eyes on Thursday night in the Big Bash when umpires asked to check for a bump-ball on a catch that was taken on the boundary.
With the standard of umpiring in the BBL already fire, the on-field officials left everyone baffled in the Sydney Sixers’ win over Brisbane Heat.
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Heat all-rounder Ben Cutting carved a full ball straight out to James Vince on the deep-cover boundary, the Englishman taking a good low catch to send Cutting packing.
However the umpires wanted to check whether the ball had come straight off the face of the bat or if it was a bump-ball, an extraordinary decision considering how far the ball had travelled.
“How can it be a bump-ball and go 60 metres,” Waugh said in commentary for Fox Cricket.
“That’s ridiculous, it’s out. I can’t believe Ben Cutting is standing there.”
England great Michael Vaughan added: “You can’t have a bump-ball go 60 yards can you?”
Needless to say the third umpire quickly confirmed that Cutting was out.
What a farce! Bump balls dont travel 60 metres!!!— Matthew Jarrett (@FANGOFOX77) January 23, 2020
You could bump ball a cricket ball 75 metres if you were playing on a concrete pitch with no matting on it.— Jim Campbell (@JustJimWillDo) January 23, 2020
But not otherwise.#BBL09
So In the Big Bash a multi minute delay for a video ref decision to see if a bump ball had gone 75 metres + to see if a catch taken 2 feet off the ground was fair? Video ref sport folks #worksincricket #varce— Rod Studd (@Rod_Studd) January 23, 2020
Sixers eye off top-two spot
The in-form Sixers are eyeing off a finals double-chance following their comprehensive victory over the Heat at the Gabba.
The Sixers moved to second on the ladder with the eight-wicket win, a vital position in the revamped five-team finals format.
With Melbourne Stars having already sewn up top spot on the ladder, just who'll meet them in the grand final qualifier is a two-horse race between Adelaide Strikers and the Sixers.
Under the new format the top two teams get a double chance in the finals, while the third-placed team will face the winner of an elimination final between the fourth and fifth-placed teams.
The win over the Heat means Sydney have a two-point lead over the Strikers.
Adelaide still have two games to play, and a superior net run rate to the Sixers, and can reclaim second place later on Friday against Perth Scorchers at Optus Stadium.
A slip-up in that game and the Sixers - with Test paceman Josh Hazlewood set to come into their lineup - have everything to play for in Saturday's match against Melbourne Renegades at the SCG.
"It's quite a big difference, I think, finishing second to third,” Vince said.
"All we can do is control what we can and Adelaide are obviously just behind us so hopefully they slip up and we can get a good win against the Renegades on Saturday.
"Finishing second just gives you one more crack at it. Quite important but we've done all we could (on Thursday) to try and get there."