From Cameron Green’s catch in the first Test to Jonny Bairstow’s stumping in the second Test, the ongoing Ashes between England and Australia has been full of controversies. On Day 2 of the ongoing fifth and final Test at The Oval, the fans witnessed another controversy erupt when Australia batter Steve Smith survived a close run out call, with some help from TV umpire Nitin Menon. In the 78th over of Australia’s first innings, Smith seemed to have fallen short when England’s substitute fielder George Ealham and Bairstow combined to affect a run out.
The decision was referred to Menon, who after watching multiple angles came to a conclusion that Bairstow had removed one of the bails even before getting his hands on the ball.
While Smith was walking back to the dressing room, Menon gave the decision in his favour.
The decision received mixed reviews from the fans. While some lauded Menon for making a tough decision, others took a cheeky “Virat Kohli” dig at him.
Here’s how Twitter reacted:
Please must read law 29.1, The wicket is broken when at least one bail is completely removed from the top of the stumps.
— Abdul Basit (@BasitCric) July 28, 2023
I think that was a good decision considering the circumstances & the amount of time that you consume while making the decision.He truly deserves to be in the ICC elite list of umpires.#NitinMenon
— Biswajit Behera (@walrus_sea) July 29, 2023
— Avnish Tiwari (@avnishtiwarii) July 28, 2023
— Cricket Fever (@ShadabShei14945) July 29, 2023
That’s top class decision by the third umpire Nitin Menon. pic.twitter.com/yKmgfG76MQ
— Cricketopia (@CricketopiaCom) July 28, 2023
Nitin Menon must not be allowed to do umpiring in any kind of International matches. pic.twitter.com/NrQTqKDcmV
— Husain (@husain_tweets18) July 29, 2023
Nitin Menon umpiring in other matches vs Nitin Menon umpiring when its Kohli pic.twitter.com/pMkkZDoeaO
— sourav (@Purplepatch22) July 22, 2023
The Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) released a statement to explain the reason behind Menon’s decision.
“The wicket is broken when at least one bail is completely removed from the top of the stumps, or one or more stumps is removed from the ground.
“Tom Smith’s Cricket Umpiring and Scoring, MCC’s official interpretation of the laws of cricket, adds: “For the purposes of dismissal — a bail has been removed at the moment that both ends of it leave their grooves.”
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