It's up to the players to make the DRS work

Martin Smith January 21, 2013, 2:11 pm

The critics of the Decision Review System were shouting from the rooftops on Sunday when Australia bore the brunt of two horror decisions in Sydney.

But rather than criticise the umpires, the blame should sit squarely at the feet of the Australian players.

Let's get one thing clear. David Warner and Moises Henriques both copped absolute stinking decisions on Sunday. Bad luck to them.

But as Michael Clarke pointed out after the match, umpires make mistakes just as players do. Making mistakes is a part of cricket and a part of human nature.

And a mistake by Clarke could have cost his team the match.

In one-day internationals, each team gets one incorrect referral per innings. Such a restriction was criticised by Warner on Monday, who called for each team to get two incorrect referrals per innings.

But restricting referrals to just one per team encourages players to only use the DRS for what it is designed to do - eliminate the howler.

The bottom line is that if Michael Clarke had not wasted Australia's one referral on a tight LBW call early in the innings, both Warner and Henriques would have been able to refer the decisions against them and earn a reprieve.

In fact, Warner contributed to his own demise when he appeared to advise Clarke to risk Australia's referral, even though replays showed the ball was hitting Clarke in line and cannoning into middle stump.

Australia took a massive risk by referring Clarke's dismissal and it came back to bite them.

Sri Lanka also took a huge risk early in the match, referring a not out LBW appeal against Warner.

Like Clarke's referral, it was a poor decision by the Sri Lankans. The ball pitched outside leg stump and was swinging down the leg side.

Sri Lanka took a risk, got it wrong and left themselves vulnerable to copping a bad decision later on. That's their prerogative and like Australia, they would have had no one to blame but themselves if a decision went against them later in the innings.

Those calling for the third umpire to intervene when a bad decision is made clearly haven't watched the Ryobi Cup this season.

The third umpire intervention system was a complete and utter failure and was abandoned after players and coaches called for its immediate removal.

Instead of putting more and more pressure on the umpires, players should take full responsibility for the DRS.

If a player wants to waste everyone's time by using a referral on a tight decision, they do so knowing they risk exposing their team to a poor decision later in the innings.

If they use referrals just for what they're meant to be used for - to eliminate obvious poor decisions - we can all get on with playing cricket.

Follow @martinsmith87 on Twitter

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  1. Bob08:38pm Monday 21st January 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    Everyone is whinging about the DRS and who should control it. I still remember when there was no DRS. If given out (even if it was a wrong decision) just left the field without swearing or cursing.

  2. Pointer03:18am Tuesday 22nd January 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    We have the technology to get decisions RIGHT. Why are we arguing about who gets to make the call about an atrocious umpiring decision? I wear glasses, am in my 60's & called Warner's inside edge live & in real speed on my TV. The decisions were so bad the 3rd Umpire should be tipping the field Umpire who should yhen change his call!!! Obvious if u have no agendas.

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  3. Hidden Fortress04:49pm Wednesday 23rd January 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    There are 2 appeals in Test cricket, why 1 in ODIs? 10 wickets fall in an innings just like Test cricket, why not have 2 appeals just like test cricket? It is more consistent. Its not good enough to use it once then its broken, for it to be truly useful there has to be 2 reviews per innings, one might be wasted but then you still have another up your sleeve to correct a bad decision.

  4. Lordy07:48pm Wednesday 23rd January 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    This Whole Yahoo comments section is 'Just Not Cricket ', a Delightfull idiom to describe an inept Yahoo that is devoiding it's subscribers of the Right to Comment on anything BUT the Cricket !

  5. Darryl06:55am Thursday 24th January 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    Warner is not an opening batsman. He gets himself out far too cheaply on many occasions. And, take all decision making away from the players and allow the umpires to use the DRS at their own discretion. Players seem to have too much say, and they are getting too big headed and arrogant with it. If players concentrated more on playing, perhaps Australia won't be looking down the barrel of an absolute flogging in the Ashes series.

  6. 07:00am Thursday 24th January 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    DRS is more trouble then it's worth. Good umpires like Simon Taufel rarely make mistakes.

  7. Ken03:55pm Wednesday 30th January 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    Martin Smith you wouldn't how to spell cricket, DRS along with the Aussie selectors is #$%$




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