Umpire Tanvir Ahmed, whose erroneous no-ball calls during the third T20I between Bangladesh and West Indies had caused an eight-minute halt in play, has admitted that he had made a mistake.
Umpiring hit a low in the series-decider as two wrong no-ball calls made way for controversy during the Bangladesh innings. Both the incidents happened in the fourth over, bowled by pacer Oshane Thomas.
Umpire Tanvir Ahmed called the first no-ball in the fifth ball when Liton Das hit a boundary. The replay showed that the bowler’s foot was well behind the line.
In the free hit off the next delivery, Liton smashed a sixer. But in the last ball of the over, Tanvir once again called no-ball and Liton, who was on 33 off 13 at that time, was caught at mid-off after attempting a big heave.
The TV replay showed that Thomas bowled a legal delivery as his foot was again, well behind the line.
After watching the replay on the big screen, the West Indies players got excited and skipper Carlos Brathwaite urged the umpire to review the decision.
Tanvir Ahmed, the umpire who wrongly adjudged Windies bowler Oshane Thomas’ delivery as a no-ball against Bangladesh during the third T20I in Mirpur, defended his mistake by saying that he is new to international cricket and that he simply had a ‘bad day’.
“In terms of a no-ball, there is always the issue of the foot and the line being close to each other,” Ahmed told Prothom Alo. “And if the bowler jumps quickly, there are occasions when it is difficult to spot it. I am new to international cricket, I made a mistake.
“If you look at my past, I don’t have a bad history. It was one mistake. Inshallah, I will come back well. Every person has good days and bad days. Yesterday I had a bad day. The match just ended yesterday. I am not focusing on anything else. I am thinking about my mistake.”
This wasn’t Ahmed’s first error in the game as he wrongly called for a no-ball of Oshane Thomas in the same over. In the second T20I, Ahmed had also wrongly given a Windies batsman leg before wicket after he had edged it onto his pads.
The incident in question though took place off the last ball of the fourth over of the Bangladesh innings which opener Liton Das miscued and was caught at mid-off before Ahmed erroneously called it an illegal delivery.
Replays on the big screen though showed that Thomas had not overstepped and the Windies skipper Carlos Brathwaite demanded a review.
However, after a stoppage of almost ten minutes when Brathwaite was in heated discussions with the umpires and match referee Jeff Crowe, it was confirmed that the decision could not be reversed. Bangladesh were allowed the resulting free-hit which Soumya Sarkar smashed for a six.
After the match, Brathwaite had said that he doesn’t believe the officials were ‘cheating’ but made it clear that he was unhappy that the 50-50 decisions weren’t going the way of the visitors in the limited overs series.
Ahmed has previously been in the eye of the storm after staging a walkout when he got into an argument with Tamim Iqbal during a Dhaka Premier League game.
Carlos Brathwaite said that a few decisions went against the Windies, and that they duly raised their concerns to the officials.
I went to the match referee (Jeff Crowe) after the second game. I didn’t think the 50/50 decisions were going in our favour. Those decisions went for Bangladesh. I never ever want to accuse someone of cheating. I will stop short of that. They are professionals as well. I don’t think they would go out there to be biased or, for lack of a better word, cheat,” the West Indies skipper said.
“I didn’t accuse them of cheating but I made my point clear to the match referee that every 50-50 decision in the ODI series and T20I series up to that point went against us. Traditionally, we haven’t (played) the best cricket, whether with red or white ball. But I found that every time I have been playing for the West Indies, the decisions have hampered us,” he added.
Brathwaite then explained what actually happened when on-field umpire Tanvir Ahmed made the second wrong no-ball call against Thomas in the fourth over.
“It happened earlier in the fourth over so a point needed to be made. They are young guys and I can’t ask them to fight that fight. If anything comes back, it should be on me. I am the leader of the ship. I just asked to stay put, stay as a team. Let me address the fourth umpire and the match referee. Obviously it was a bit hostile and emotional. We are fighting for our countries, but it was respectful. I was just asking the rule,” Brathwaite explained.
The West Indies captain Carlos Brathwaite praised his young team for showing character and clinching a comprehensive 50-run win during the T20I of the series,, despite some decisions going against them.
We were 88 in the Powerplay. It goes to show that if we have positive intent to back your ability and play good cricket shots, you can end up with massive scores in the first six overs.
As a bowling unit we were under the pump a bit. But what was most impressive was how we kept our resolve after everything that happened. How we came back out, settled ourselves and then took the opposition wickets. It was a top team effort by all the players involved, said Brathwaite after the match.
“For a young group of guys who are often talked about playing bad shots or bowling the wrong delivery because of inexperience, I think they showed the character. I must congratulate a fantastic bunch of young players. They are inexperienced at this level, but with a lot of maturity and heart,” he added.