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    Creative Commons License
    Rabble Rousing Random Ramblings by S Jagadish is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.

    February 03, 2004


    The umpiring this season in Australia has generally been quite poor, both in the Tests and one-dayers. I haven't watched too much of the other cricket happening, but I daresay, the situation isn't that much better elsewhere. The main problems which are contributing to the poor performanc by the umpires are:

    • The complexity of their job.
    • Having to spend upto 6 hours in a day in the hot sun concentrating on every ball.
    • The usage of replay screens at grounds.

    Wouldn't it make life easier for the umpires and result in better decision making if their load was decreased, just through better resource usage? At any international match, there are four umpires of whom two are on the field, one is the third umpire and the other is the reserve umpire. I am fairly sure it makes a lot of sense to use all four umpires. The assumption is that the two off-field umpires are also qualified, that's the reason they're appointed in the first place. For a test match, you could have this scenario. Lets say the umpires are A, B, C & D. There're 15 sessions in a Test.

    UmpiresA & BB & C C & DD & AA & BB & DC & DD & AA & BA & CC & D D & AA & BB & CC & D

    The total number of sessions and the number of consecutive sessions on the same day is:

    UmpireTotal SessionsConsecutive

    While umpires A & D have 8 sessions to manage, it is offset by the fact that they don't do as many consecutive sessions as B & C do.

    The other issue about the ICC and umpires which intrigues me is why umpires & match referees' reports on captains' and players' conduct is made public and charges are laid as soon as play is over, while captains' reports on umpires are never made public. Surely the spectators and TV audiences across the world, as well as the players who participated in the match, have a right to prompt action.

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