Tom Merilaht, who was a victim of an umpiring howler back in 2007, reacted in a typical Brit fashion to his Twitter queries when the video resurfaced again on Sunday. The video shows the ball passing well outside the off-stump with the batsman missing it by a foot before the umpire ruled him out.
The video of the particular incident has become viral after Yuvraj Singh posted it on his Instagram account. It clearly shows that the ball passed outside the off stump with the batsman not getting any connection whatsoever. Though none of the players appealed- the bowler, the wicket-keeper or even the fielder at second slip- the umpire raised his finger after an initial hesitation in response to a shrug from the fielder.
What's more surprising was the batsman not questioning the decision and walking off the pitch instantly. The match was between Surrey and Leeds/Bradford UCCE at the Oval on March 15, 2007.
A post shared by Yuvraj Singh (@yuvisofficial) on
After almost a decade the incident was brought to light once again when Yuvraj Singh posted the video meme on his social media account. It went viral soon with the Twitteratis tagging Merilaht and asking him the reason for the dismissal. The batsman came up with some witty answers-
Umpire was seeing double— Thomas Merilaht (@tmerilaht) November 13, 2017
The umpire was drunk I think— Thomas Merilaht (@tmerilaht) November 12, 2017
Was on for Lara’s 501 that day too :(— Thomas Merilaht (@tmerilaht) November 13, 2017
I’ll tell you at the IPL in April 🏏🏏— Thomas Merilaht (@tmerilaht) November 13, 2017
Though Merilaht didn't clarify anything, people on Reddit came up with ridiculous conspiracy theories as explanations for the dismissal.
One guy posted a Whatsapp forward on Reddit, which states, "This is a match from Surrey vs Leeds/Bradford UCCE at the Oval, 15th March 2007. The batsman is Tom Merilaht. Bowler is Mohammed Akram. Umpire is Ian Gould. It seems the batsman was hit wicket in the last ball of the previous over but by then the umpire had called over up. The batsman cannot be given out until a legal ball is bowled. So after the first ball of the next over, he was given out."
An alternative explanation offered by several YouTube members - that "the batsman was out hit wicket - also falls down on several counts, although none involving accusations of fixing: adjudicating on an appeal for hit wicket is the responsibility of the umpire at the striker's end, not the bowler's end; no part of the batsman's bat or body is anywhere near the stumps at any point during the video; and the bails can be clearly seen still in place as the batsman walks off."
Another guy came up with a slightly logical explanation stating "it was shot as part of an advertisement (as is also suggested in one or two comments); it was originally a genuine piece of footage from a match, but has been edited to make the decision look incorrect (as one more acute observer pointed out, the ball appears not to cast a shadow); or simply that someone persuaded a few of his mates to stage the 'incident' in order to put it on YouTube and have a good laugh at everyone trying to work it out. Whichever is really the case, it certainly does not show an incident which really took place in a top-level match."
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