In a thrilling ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 encounter, Babar Azam’s Pakistan team fought valiantly but faced their fourth consecutive defeat, narrowly losing to South Africa by one wicket. The match, held at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai, witnessed a contentious moment when the last South African batsman, Tabraiz Shamsi, survived a close leg-before-wicket (LBW) appeal. Umpire’s decision in favor of Shamsi sparked controversy, and former Indian off-spinner Harbhajan Singh placed blame on “bad umpiring” for Pakistan’s narrow defeat.
What Harbhajan Singh Has to Say About the Controversial Dismissal?
Harbhajan Singh took to a social media platform to express his frustration with the umpiring decision. He stated, “Bad umpiring and bad rules cost Pakistan this game.” Harbhajan emphasized the need for changes in the rules and asserted that if the ball is hitting the stump, it should be considered out, irrespective of the umpire’s original decision. He questioned the efficacy of technology when ‘umpire’s call’ becomes the determining factor.
Bad umpiring and bad rules cost Pakistan this game.. @ICC should change this rule .. if the ball is hitting the stump that’s out whether umpire gave out or not out doesn’t matter.. otherwise what is the use of technology??? @TheRealPCB vs #SouthAfrica #worldcup
— Harbhajan Turbanator (@harbhajan_singh) October 27, 2023
— Graeme Smith (@GraemeSmith49) October 27, 2023
Former South Africa captain Graeme Smith, who was a spectator at the match, shared Harbhajan Singh’s concerns about the ‘umpire’s call.’ Still, he argued that Rassie van der Dussen, the South African batter in question, should have received a ‘not out’ decision in a similar circumstance.
Babar Azam’s Perspective
In contrast to Harbhajan Singh’s critique, Pakistan’s captain Babar Azam did not blame the umpires for the team’s loss. He considered it part of the game and stated, “It’s part of the game; this is umpire’s call, so I think it’s just part of the game.” Babar Azam recognized the missed opportunity to secure a win and stay in the tournament but remained determined to perform better in their upcoming matches.
Pakistan’s innings, where they posted a total of 270 in 46.4 overs while batting first, came under scrutiny. They fell short of the ideal target by 10-15 runs on this challenging surface. Despite the efforts of pacers Shaheen Shah Afridi and Mohammad Wasim Jr, who contributed with wickets, South Africa secured a nerve-wracking victory.