England protest against review decision

The ECB announced it had demanded a reinstatement of the review the England team lost when TV umpire Harper made a "gross error" in rejecting an appea

updated: January 16, 2010 12:26 IST
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The England Cricket Board on Saturday announced it had demanded a reinstatement of the review the England team lost when television umpire Daryl Harper made a "gross error" in rejecting an appeal against South African captain Graeme Smith.

Match referee Roshan Mahanama, meanwhile, issued a statement defending Harper, saying the umpire followed the correct protocol in upholding a not out decision by on-field umpire Tony Hill when Smith was on 15 during the second day's play on Friday. Smith went on to make 105.

The ECB said it accepted that the decision could not be overturned but had issued a formal appeal to the International Cricket Council for the review to be reinstated.

"The ECB has sought further clarification from ICC that there is nothing in the regulations to prevent the ICC chief executive and/or match referee from reinstating the referral to correct the gross error in process," it said in a statement.

"The ECB would like to make clear that the England team management had registered concerns regarding the absence of hotspot for use in the Decision Review System at a pre-series meeting attended by ICC officials and the match referee.

"The England team management were advised that the protocol for this series would be that the sound on the stump microphone would be turned up on decision review to check for disputed catches.

"In ECB and the England team management's view, the agreed protocol was not implemented and the sound was not turned up on review.

"As a result a TV replay which indicated that bat had made contact with ball was heard by millions of television viewers but not by the match control team."

ECB chairman Giles Clarke said: "We have grave concerns about how this process was implemented and I will be addressing the issue at the highest levels within ICC during this match."

In his statement Mahanama denied telling England coach Andy Flower that Harper had failed to adjust the volume of an audio feed from the stump microphone.

He said the volume on the third umpire's feed was set by a head engineer of the host broadcaster, the South African Broadcasting Corporation, and an ICC technical adviser.

"If the audio level had been increased above its optimum level, distortion on the audio feed would have occurred and the feed might not have given a clear indication of the true sound.

"At no stage (had) I indicated to the England team management that the third umpire had forgotten to adjust the volume of the speakers. I had actually briefed the England team management of the protocols that were followed during this review."

There was no immediate response from the ICC and England had used up both their reviews and could not seek a challenge when AB de Villiers edged a ball from Ryan Sidebottom shortly before lunch on Saturday and was given not out by umpire Steve Davis.