x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

Dhoni sparks debate on performance of match officials

MS Dhoni, the India captain, has warned that match officials must improve their performance, fuelling a fresh debate on the controversial Umpire Decision Review System.

MS Dhoni, the India captain, has warned that match officials must improve their performance, fuelling a fresh debate on the controversial Umpire Decision Review System (UDRS).

"There are two gentlemen standing on the ground as umpires," Dhoni said yesterday ahead of his side's first Test with New Zealand in Ahmedabad, which starts today.

"They are professionals and paid to do their job. They have got support from the TV umpire. So it is surprising to see them making some of the mistakes. They have to step up and perform."

Dhoni, however, said he was not in favour of implementing the UDRS, which allows players to appeal against a decision made by the on-field umpires.

"I have mixed opinion on the UDRS," he said. "It is not something that gives 100 per cent results. It is not always correct. It is like I have to buy a life jacket but it does not come with a warranty."

India are coming off a 2-0 home series win over Australia, and Daniel Vettori, the New Zealand captain, is aware of the scale of the task his side faces against the top-ranked Test team in the world.

"The talent and success they have is awesome," he said.

Meanwhile, Sri Lanka claimed a stunning one-wicket victory over Australia in their opening one-day international yesterday, courtesy of a record-breaking ninth wicket partnership by Angelo Mathews and Lasith Malinga.

Looking dead and buried at 107 for eight as they chased Australia's 239 for eight in Melbourne, the Sri Lankans roared home on the back of a sensational 132-run stand from man-of-the-match Mathews and the fast bowler Malinga.The second game in the three-match series is tomorrow.

* Agency