Former Test captain Ramiz Raja says the “smart watch” controversy was unnecessarily created by media during the Pakistan and England Test match at Lords. ICC’s Anti-Corruption officials rapped the Pakistan team for two of its players, Asad Shafiq and Babar Azam, wearing apple smart watches on the field on the first day of the match. “I think it was an unnecessary controversy because this is not something new,” Raja told the “Jang” newspaper in London.
Raja pointed out that during the one-off Test against Ireland in Malahide earlier this month, he had in fact inquired from Asad as to why he was wearing a smart watch and he responded by saying that it was too keep a tab on his fitness and timing. Raja also said that some Irish players were also wearing smart watches during the Test. The Pakistani media has also reported that even the ICC’s anti-corruption officer in the Lords test was not aware of the rules and laws governing wearing of a smart watch in a match.
“An English journalist brought the matter to the notice of Peter Oshay who was unaware of what the ICC regulations say about using a smart watch on the field,” one report said. Due to rising incidents of corruption in international cricket, the ICC has now even stopped umpires, trainers and team officials from using smart watches during matches on the ground.
The report said the ICC headquarters got in touch with its Anti-corruption officer and updated him and then he reprimanded the Pakistani players for wearing the smart watches on field.