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ICC defends Kumar Dharmasena over umpiring decision in World Cup final

Simon Taufel said after the match that the officials had made a “mistake” in awarding England one extra run. Kumar Dharmasena had later admitted that there had been a judgemental error but that he will "never regret the decision".

Kumar Dharmasena (right) and Marais Erasmus were the on-field umpires for the World Cup final (File Photo/Reuters)

The International Cricket Council (ICC), the global governing body of cricket, speaking for the first time about the contentious decision made by on-field umpires in the last over of the World Cup final on July 14, has stood by on-field umpires Kumar Dharmasena and Marais Erasmus.

“They had to make a judgement call on the day as to whether the batsmen had crossed when the throw was released,” ICC’s general manager of cricket, Geoff Allardice, was quoted as saying by ESPNCricinfo.

“After everything that went on during that delivery, they got together over their comms system and made their decision. They certainly followed the right process when making the decision.

“They were aware of the law when they made the judgment about whether the batsmen had crossed or not at the time. The playing conditions don’t allow them to refer to such a decision to a third umpire. The match referee cannot intervene when the umpires on the field have to make a judgement call like that,” he said.

The two on-field umpires, Kumar Dharmasena and Marais Erasmus, had awarded six runs, instead of five, to an overthrow from Martin Guptill in the 50th over during England’s run chase.

This was despite the fact that the two batsmen, Ben Stokes and Adil Rashid, didn’t cross, as they went for a second run and the ball accidentally deflected off Stokes’s bat to the boundary. This was an error of judgement on the part of the umpires and awarding six runs contradicted MCC’s Law 19.8. Simon Taufel, now a member of the MCC laws sub-committee, confirmed after the match that the officials had made a “mistake” in awarding England one extra run. Also, Rashid should have faced the next ball.

Kumar Dharmasena, speaking after the match, had admitted that there had been a judgemental error in awarding six runs from the overthrow, but also added that he will “never regret the decision”.

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