Reports: BCCI unwilling to invest in the DRS system for Ranji Trophy final

Reports: BCCI unwilling to invest in the DRS system for Ranji Trophy final

'It's an expensive exercise to use the DRS. The costs shoot up,' said a former India player.

Sarfaraz Khan in Ranji trophy
Sarfaraz Khan in Ranji trophy (Photo Source: Twitter)

Many people are curious about the absence of a Decision Review System (DRS) in the current Ranji Trophy final between Mumbai and Madhya Pradesh at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium. When Mumbai batter Sarfaraz Khan escaped a tight LBW appeal from MP seamer Gaurav Yadav, it gave him an extra life and he then went on to hit a ton, his fourth this season, and finished his innings scoring 134 runs off 243 balls.

‘Limited DRS’ was a new rule that the BCCI tested during the 2019–20 Ranji Trophy semifinals and final. Hawk-Eye and UltraEdge, two essential components of the technology used in international cricket, were not included in this constrained version of DRS. The decision was made after Cheteshwar Pujara received two lifelines (caught behind) while competing for Saurashtra against Karnataka in the Ranji Trophy semifinal in the 2018–19 season. Karnataka lost the game as a result.

“We believe in our umpires. It’s an expensive exercise to use the DRS. The costs shoot up. How does it matter if there’s no DRS in the final? It’s time we trusted the umpires. India’s two best umpires (KN Ananthapadmanabhan and Virender Sharma) are officiating in this game. And what’s the end result? If you use it in the final, you will want to introduce it in the league stage of the Ranji Trophy too,” a former India player told The Times of India.

You can’t have a half-baked DRS: BCCI source

Considering the fact that the BCCI recently made a pretty good sum of INR 48,390 crore in its new broadcast arrangement for the next five-year cycle of the Indian Premier League, where DRS is utilized in every game, the “cost” argument for not utilizing DRS, which can at least eliminate on-field blunders, seems silly.

“The rigging (wiring) and derigging of all the equipment will be extremely costly. HawkEye means extra cameras are needed. Ranji is done with limited equipment. The argument will then be that why not for all televised games. Look, you can’t have a half-baked DRS. The last time, it was used for limited replays to see if there’s an edge or not. You can’t use the ball trajectory – a critical element of DRS,” a source familiar with the situation stated.