Tuesday, October 07, 2003

L.B.W

There's this anecdote about Chandrashekar, once in England, getting a batsman plumb in front twice. Both times, he was turned down. A ball later, he sent one through and bowled the batsman. Chandra goes, Howzaaat? The umpire looks puzzled and says, he's bowled. Chandra's reply was a classic: "I know he is bowled, but is he out?"


I was feeling nostalgic about my school day cricket after reading the above in ematchfixing.com .It was one of those sunny days in May, a cricket match was arranged between our town and the nearby town,for a bet of INR Rs.20 (a very big amount during those days). My streetmates wanted me to play for our side as the match was with one of the tough teams in the area. Generally for our matches, the umpire's will be from the batting side and so obviously it would be impossible to dismiss any batsman catching leg before wicket(LBW). Match started and we bowled first.As expected the opponent team was very tough and they had set us a near impossible target.
Our batting started.With some surprise extras and with the skill of our scorer we managed to raise the score near to the target. It was the final over and we needed 11 runs with one wicket in hand. I was standing in the leg umpire position with one of my friends from our team as the Main umpire. We managed a single,four,three and a single in the first four balls of the over. Everyone was very tense. The fifth ball got the batsman plumb before the wicket and there was a huge LBW appeal. The bowler was a gigantic fella. My friend who was the main umpire panicked by the huge threatening appeal from the bowler and others, unconsciously started raising his forefinger signaling the batsman out. This would mean that we have lost the match.Thats it! before my friend raised his hand above his shoulder all my team-mates including me gave a very big shout "NOT OUTTTTT". Wakenup by our cry my friend realised his mistake. Everyone was looking at him what he is going to say. My friend coolly brushed off all those cries and shouted "One more ball to go!!" and without raising it over his head he moved his arm with the forefinger signaling for one. The opponent team was totally dumb founded. There was a huge argument after that but we managed to win the argument and match finally.
It was one of those classic incidents of my school day cricket and my friend was then unanimously accepted as the star umpire of our team. This incident made him popular in the area and he even got offers for umpiring for other matches in our area too!

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