Umpire did not signal one for the over – Kusal Perera
Kusal Perera, despite being unable to give much clarification regarding the fracas between the Sri Lankan and Bangladeshi players during the last over of Nidahas Trophy game between the two sides, hinted that the incident in the middle was as a result of an umpiring call.
Speaking at the post match press conference, he said this regarding what happened in the middle.“I think the head umpire didn’t call it (the one bouncer for the over) so it’s a legal delivery. I didn’t see the umpire calling it.”
Bangladesh went into the last over needing 12 to win with the set batsman Mahmudullah Riyad at the non-striker’s end. Isuru Udana fired a bouncer at lower order batsman Mustafizur Rahman, the batsman missed it and Udana went up for a caught behind. Thisara Perera unsuccessfully reviewed and in the heat of the moment, umpire at the striker’s end Raveendra Wimalasiri, had failed to signal the ‘one for the over’ (according to Kusal Perera). Udana bowled another bouncer, which Rahman missed once again but the batsmen decided to try and pinch a single. Rahman was run-out at the non-striker’s end and Mahmudullah immediately rushed over to the square leg umpire to question him as to why the 2nd bouncer of the over was not called a no-ball. On this Kusal said,
Currently, bowlers are allowed to deliver two bouncers per over in Tests and one-day internationals, and one per over in Twenty20 internationals.
Heated arguments followed between the players of both sides and the officials were forced to step in when Bangladeshi skipper Shakib Al Hasan stormed towards the boundary line, flailing his arms and threatening to call his players off the field.
“These things can happen in the middle. At the end of the day, they want to win the game. I have played a lot of T20s, but this one was a bit emotional”
The substitutes too got in on the action, running onto the field at the dismissal of Rahman and getting into some verbals with Sri Lanka skipper Thisara Perera.
What was said and done on the field remained unclear but the Bangladeshis were seemingly incensed that the square leg umpire stretched his arm to signal a no-ball, but eventually deemed it as a legal delivery once Rahman’s run-out was completed. This may or may not have been a result of the square-leg umpire realizing that the umpire at the striker’s end had not called one for the over.
The delay lasted a few minutes but the Bangladeshi batsmen did return to the crease and Mahmudullah’s four, two, six, sealed the game in Bangladesh’s favour.
As expected there were raucous celebrations from the visitors but don’t be surprised if the incident results in some disciplinary action for players from both teams.
Players were quick to cool down after the match with Tamim Iqbal saying “It’s very emotional. We saw the leg umpire signaling a no ball and that’s why we were complaining. That created the confusion. It’s a gentleman’s game, everyone should have behaved better, especially from our team, we could have done it nicely. It’s all done and dusted now. Sri Lankans are great friends. I don’t think this incident will create anything bad.”