Former India cricketer Gautam Gambhir has lambasted the third umpire for not allowing a catch claimed by Kolkata Knight Riders' Rahul Tripathi during the match against Punjab Kings on Friday. In the dying stages of the match, Punjab captain KL Rahul went for the big shot on the on-side but could not quite find the sweet spot on the bat.
Pouncing on an opportunity for a catch, fielder Tripathi dived to his front and seemingly got his fingers underneath the ball. However, after ultra-slow-motion replays of the incident repeated over and over again, it started to look more and more doubtful before the third umpire Anil Dandekar eventually ruled it in favour of the batting team, implying Rahul got a life. Moreover, Punjab went on to clinch the match by five wickets.
Post the match, there have been several criticisms of the decision from former cricketers and experts. While Englishman Graeme Swann termed it the worst piece of third umpiring that he had ever seen, Gambhir also seemed to echo similar sentiments. He added that perhaps that one decision can go on to dent the team's campaign and there should not be any place for such "shockers" in a tournament like the IPL.
Dandekar shouldn’t have seen the replay more than once: Gambhir
"That was a shocker, this can end someone’s campaign. He shouldn’t have seen the replay more than once, it just looked out. Even if they had got KL Rahul out, things would have been different. We cannot have these kinds of shockers in the IPL," Gambhir said after the match on Star Sports.
Punjab Kings' win over Kolkata has added another twist to the race to the Playoffs. The result means that now both the teams are stranded at 10 points from 12 matches. While Mumbai Indians also have 10 points, they have played a game less which means that both Punjab and Kolkata will be hoping for a Delhi Capitals victory over Mumbai since it will be a boost to their respective campaigns.
However, if Mumbai register a win over Delhi on Saturday they will enter the top 4 of the points with 12 points.