IPL’s expert analysts Gautam Gambhir and Graeme Swann were left seething after the third umpire disallowed Rahul Tripathi’s stunning catch of KL Rahul on Friday. The incident took place during Punjab Kings’ (PBKS) run chase against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in Dubai.
PBKS was bossing the chase of 166, with Rahul looking comfortable at the crease. A major moment occurred in the penultimate over bowled by Shivam Mavi. On the third delivery of the over, Rahul mistimed a ball to deep mid-wicket where Tripathi ran in and grabbed the ball, just inches away from the ground.
Replays suggested that the fingers were underneath the ball, but the third umpire thought otherwise. He felt that the ball had made contact with the ground, and Rahul continued his knock. Although he got out in the next over, the damage was already done. Reacting to that, Swann and Gambhir were fuming during Star Sports’ post-match show.
“That was a shocker. This can end someone’s campaign. It was clearly out. He shouldn’t have even seen the replay more than once. Even without the slow-mo, it looked out. Things could have changed. We have seen Punjab panic in the last over. These sorts of shockers cannot happen, especially at the level of IPL. It could be very unfair not only to the player but to the entire franchise,” Gambhir said.
It’s terrible umpiring. That was just a joke – Graeme Swann
The former England off-spinner also criticized the third umpire for making the wrong decision despite the use of technology. He reckoned it looked out to the naked eye as well, and the decision could break Kolkata’s season from here on.
“I have just witnessed one of the worst bits of third umpiring in my life. That is blatantly out. Running in and taken a brilliant catch. That is superb. It’s out in full motion. That shouldn’t have been looked into anyway but they have looked at it, there is none of that silly soft signal anymore.“
“The third umpire has somehow not got the cricketing knowledge to know that’s out. He’s looked at it from four or five angles that we saw up close and it never looked not out at any point. And yet he gave him not out. It’s terrible umpiring. That was just a joke,” Swann claimed.
PBKS managed to hold their nerve in the final over this time and went over the line with three balls to spare. The win took them to fifth place on the points table, level with KKR.