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I will never regret the decision I made, says Kumar Dharmasena on the controversial overthrow in the World Cup final

He admitted that there was a judgemental error.

Kumar Dharmasena
Kumar Dharmasena. (Photo by Gareth Copley-IDI/IDI via Getty Images)

It’s been a week since the 2019 World Cup final has finished but many are still busy discussing the game. Undoubtedly, it was the best ODI game ever played and irrespective of the result, both England and New Zealand should be proud of themselves for the effort they put in. But some crunch moments decided the game eventually and one of them was the umpire Kumar Dharmasena awarding six runs to England in the last over of the chase when the ball ricocheted off Ben Stokes’ bat.

The incident took place in the final over when the home team needed nine runs off three balls and the Kiwis almost had the World Cup trophy in the bag. The batsman swatted the ball to deep mid-wicket and set off for two runs. While taking the second run, Stokes dived to avoid getting run-out only for his bat to deflect the ball to the boundary.

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The on-field umpires consulted then to give England six runs when actually five runs should’ve signalled. According to the cricketing laws, the two batsmen should’ve crossed each other when the fielder threw the ball and Stokes and Adil Rashid hadn’t crossed when Martin Guptill fired in a throw. It was considered as a clear mistake by the former international umpire Simon Taufel.

It’s easy for people to comment after seeing TV replays

Speaking about the controversial call to a Sri Lankan publication the Sunday Times, Kumar Dharmasena has cleared that he has no regrets about the decision he made regarding the overthrow. However, he also admitted that they made a judgemental error in the middle.

“It’s easy for people to comment after seeing TV replays. I agree that there was a judgmental error when I see it on TV replays now. But we did not have the luxury of TV replays at the ground and I will never regret the decision I made. Besides, the ICC praised me for the decision I made at that time,” he said.

Dharmasena also cleared that he communicated to the leg umpire Marais Erasmus before making the decision and even the other umpires agreed to give six runs to England. “There is no provision in the law to refer this to the third umpire as no dismissal was involved. So, I did consult the leg umpire through the communication system which is heard by all other umpires and the match referee.

“And, while they cannot check TV replays, they all confirmed that the batsmen have completed the run. This is when I made my decision,” the 48-year-old added.

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