Hallelujah! I don’t pay to watch you dawdle
I HAVE one thing to say about Angelo Mathews’ groundbreaking dismissal yesterday: hallelujah!
It’s about time. I haven’t paid my money to watch cricketers wandering about aimlessly. Mathews should have been ready because he knew he was next in, and when the fourth Sri Lankan wicket fell, he had two minutes to face up. What is the problem? Too many players faff about, doing nothing. Just get on with the game.
Part of the ludicrously slow pace to the game, which means teams cannot fulfil 15 overs an hour, is a batter dawdling in, when they’re supposed to cross the outgoing batter on the field of play. Some wait until his team-mate is off the field before they get up from their seat. It’s ludicrous.
So, well done to Bangladesh for recognising their right to appeal and well done to Marais Erasmus. I’ll send him a Christmas card. He’s a thoroughly good bloke who has now gone up in my estimation. This will be one of my favourite dismissals, and I hope it leads to more! It’s made me yearn for my umpiring days. I’d be delighted to send some off! One thing I have advocated is the bowler bowling the ball once the allotted two minutes is up, regardless of whether the batsman is ready. I couldn’t care less if the batsman has taken guard or not, the umpire has an obligation when two minutes has gone to call ‘play’. If the player isn’t at the crease, or hasn’t got the right gloves, helmet or bat — unlucky. An addendum here: players should not be going down mid-over for a chat with their team-mate, because the laws state the batsman has to be ready when the bowler is at the end of his normal run. Let this be a warning.