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Australia pushing for umpire referrals in India series

August 12, 2010 14:09 IST

Australia's cricket administrators are attempting to soften Indian opposition to the umpire decision referral system, starting with its use in the Test series between the two countries in October.

Cricket Australia is pushing for the use of the system in the October series, with two Tests to be played in Mohali and Bangalore, as a precursor to the home Ashes series in which the UDRS will be used.

It would also serve as a way to get the system into place in India ahead of the 2011 World Cup, which the ICC has indicated will feature the referral system.

"We''re genuinely hopeful we will be able to persuade them that DRS is a good thing," the Sydney Morning Herald quoted a Cricket Australia spokesman, as saying.

Despite a widely held belief that the system (UDRS) should be made mandatory for all internationals, an International Cricket Council ruling allows countries to choose whether or not they wish to use it on a series-by-series basis.

This has led to considerable confusion among players and umpires, who may operate under one system for a series before having to switch back to the other.

Cost is one reason for the inconsistency, as many cricket boards have claimed an inability to pay for the technology.

In India's case there are no such financial constraints, only a vague mistrust of the system summed up by the words "we don't like it".

India's players have been near united in their opposition to referrals since a series in Sri Lanka in 2008. During those matches, the Sri Lankans successfully changed 11 decisions, as opposed to only one by the Indian team, a discrepancy that led the tourists to conclude they were better off taking their chances and pressuring umpires rather than allowing technology to have a greater say.

"DRS is still not a 100 per cent correct system," Indian skipper M S Dhoni said last month.

"We have seen that, in spite of having the DRS, not everything goes correct. Most of the teams have played a series under the DRS, so it is important now to come up with a foolproof plan," he added.

Plain-speaking India opener Virender Sehwag recently broke ranks to say he is in favour of the system, which has been proven to improve the ratio of correct decisions from around 94 per cent to nearer 98 per cent.

Batting great Sachin Tendulkar, however, remains opposed.

Australian captain Ricky Ponting, Sri Lankan skipper Kumar Sangakkara and international players' union boss Tim May have all expressed the view that the system should be mandatory across all series.

Source: ANI