Pant loses his cool

Bipin Dani

Former India cricketers have strongly reacted to Delhi Capitals captain Rishabh Pant’s action, who in the IPL match against Rajasthan Royals on Friday had asked his batters to walk off.

Pant was frustrated when the umpires didn’t declare Obed McCoy’s waist height delivery a no ball, thus giving his team the chance of a free hit. He even asked his coaching staff member Praveen Amre to go on the field and speak to the umpires.

“Pant’s action of asking batters to walk off was not justified. Calling off the match whatever are the circumstances is a serious offence”, says former India captain and selector Dilip Vengsarkar. Vengzarkar, however, agrees with Pant’s views on seeking the opinion of the 3rd umpire.

“I fully agree with Pant as the third umpire should have declared it as a no ball like the way he normally declares it when the bowler bowls a no ball but only if he was convinced it was a no ball”.

India’s another former cricketer, Pragyan Ojha believes that Pant could have handled the situation better. “Whatever these cricketers do on field are being watched by youngsters on TV. Sending a coaching staff member on the field like what Dhoni also did in the past is not at all acceptable, Ojha said.

At the same time, Ojha adds, “how the match referee is consulted by the coach or the captain in such disagreements in international matches, Pant could have chosen this approach. Agreed, the rules don’t allow a no-ball to be referred unless a wicket is being reviewed but when we have other resources, 26 cameras are functioning, why can’t there be an exception ?”.

“Other vehicles stop at the red signal but ambulance and fire brigades are exempted. Similarly such exemptions can avoid the controversies”, Ojha argued.

Madan R. Singh, the 67-year-old former umpire, who has officiated in 10 ODIs, says, “the present rules were made aware of in advance. One has to go along with it. The protocols are known to all in advance. So, why be petulant ? The punishment should be exemplary”.


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