Labuschagne pardoned in slips controversy, greats call for rule change amid bad light drama: Talking Points

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Fans who came to the SCG in anticipation of an action-packed day of cricket between Australia and South Africa were repeatedly frustrated as poor light and rain combined to severely limit proceedings.

Play first came to a halt during the drinking break of the second session, when the umpires took a light reading and determined that conditions were no longer safe for the Proteas pace bowlers to continue.

Captain Dean Elgar declined the offer to use only his bowlers while the two sides duly headed for an early morning tea.

A light drizzle in Sydney then extended the break to over an hour; then, just as play appeared to resume at 3:45 p.m., it was postponed again as Day 1 threatened to descend into farce.

Referee Chris Gaffaney again took a light reading and thought the light was no better than when play stopped. Under the rules of cricket, play cannot resume after a bad light delay until the light improves.

Australian Test legend and former captain Steve Waugh posted on Instagram that cricket was left behind.

“Test cricket need to realize that there is a lot of competition and not using the lights when the players are away because of poor lighting just doesn’t make sense. Many upset spectators who cannot understand the logic and reason for not playing #commonsense #movewiththetimes @icc @cricketaustralia”

Her first skipper, Allan Border, was also unimpressed and called on the ICC to change the current low-light rules.

“You could play like that in my opinion,” he continued Fox cricket.

“I have been advocating this case for about 20 years – that the current light rule is too loose. It’s too easy to get rid of it when it gets dark in the afternoon.

“It’s something the game needs to look at more closely to know when it gets dangerous, when it gets hard to see. Right now, with the lights on, if we used a pink ball, we’d be playing.

Former player Mark Waugh agreed, citing the SCG floodlights providing enough visibility for play to continue.

“I say once the lights are on, we stay on — it’s that simple,” Waugh said.

“It’s an outdoor sport – sometimes the light favors one side over the other.

“The ICC needs to keep an eye on the crowd here; there are 30,000 people here. Did Australia look like they couldn’t see the ball when they kicked? I think they got it right.

“The lights are on, we stay on. Simple.”

The referees test the light on the first day. (Photo by Brett Hemmings – CA/Cricket Australia via Getty Images)

Former South African captain Shaun Pollock had an even more drastic solution: using a pink ball, used exclusively for day-night testing, to replace a red ball in low-light conditions.

“You kind of think, well, keep evolving the pink ball to work just like the red ball all the time, and then you’ve solved that problem forever and a day,” he said. .

The final delay would last just over an hour, and play could finally resume, much to the delight of bored fans.

The Proteas quickly made the most of the replay, with Marnus Labuschagne falling for 79 on a brilliant bowling from Anrich Nortje.

But as soon as Steve Smith made his way into midfield, the bad light struck again and the players were sent off for a third time.

Proteas furious after the ref’s third call as Marnus slips away, controversially

Controversy erupted just after lunch on Day 1 at the SCG – and not for the first time this summer South Africa felt they had cut the end of the stick.

At 70 and playing beautifully, Marnus Labuschagne was pulled into a lead by the speedy Marco Jansen, the opportunity beautifully taken at first slip by Simon Harmer…or so it seemed.

However, after a lengthy assessment third umpire Richard Kettleborough thought otherwise, finding the ball had hit the grass before Harmer had caught it and ignoring the pitch call.

The Proteas stood in disbelief at the call, with captain Dean Elgar immediately asking referee Chris Gaffaney for an explanation.

“Are there fingers underneath?” You can never get close enough to figure out where the fingers are,” former South African great Shaun Pollock continued fox cricket in connection.

“He [Kettleborough] must be 100% convinced that he has worn it.

Former Aussie batsman Mark Waugh opined that the Proteas could consider themselves going through a rough patch.

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“The silent signal was out – it could go either way, let’s face it.

“It was hard to say. I thought it probably looked like it from the front; on the one hand there was enough doubt. But once it spreads… they’ll find themselves a little unhappy, South Africans.

During a subsequent coffee break, Usman Khawaja, Labuschagne’s non-striker, predictably said his partner was right with a pardon, jokingly claiming the home field advantage had helped his case.

“Australia – Not Out!” he smiles.

“The decision of the referee is leading. The referee took a good look at him. I thought there was doubt, I’m sure South Africa thinks otherwise.

“I know everyone is a little biased, so that’s the way it is.”

Marnus Labuschagne from Australia interviews Kyle Verreynne and Sarel Erwee from South Africa.

Marnus Labuschagne from Australia interviews Kyle Verreynne and Sarel Erwee from South Africa. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)

‘Really surprised’: Proteas’ bizarre move questioned when play was interrupted

Shortly after Labuschagne’s postponement, both teams left, as officials determined that the light at the SCG was insufficient to allow play to continue.

However, it was soon revealed that while the light was too dim for the Proteas to continue playing the rapids, the umpires had given Elgar the chance to continue playing with the spider pair Keshav Maharaj and Simon Harmer.

However, Elgar refused, the game was duly suspended and an early tea was called.

speaking fox cricketformer test spinner Kerry O’Keeffe was shocked by the call, citing Harmer’s impressive start with the ball and numerous mid-order left-handers for the out-spinner to target as reason enough for the Proteas to continue.

“What’s curious is that Dean Elgar refused to take the spinners. I thought Harmer looked the best, most likely to take a wicket,” said O’Keeffe.

“There are some left-handers coming – [Travis] head, [Matt] Renshaw, [Alex] Carey. It was a chance to get Australia up and running and get them out, and he said ‘no, I would play against the fastest guys, we’re going to leave’.

“I’m really surprised by that as well,” former great Michael Hussey added.

Called up in place of fast bowler Lungi Ngidi with the SCG wicket to aid spin, Harmer had started brilliantly with the ball, Usman Khawaja giving the first LBW of his bowl after lunch.

However, Khawaja’s criticism would soon spare him, the DRS finding that the ball had hit his glove first.

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