Former Indian batsman Sachin Tendulkar has revealed that, back in 2008, either India didn't know how to refer DRS decisions or there was something wrong with it. DRS, known as UDRS back in 2008, was first used in an India-Sri Lanka Test series, where India were left livid with many decisions.
For the longest period of time, India were opposed to the use of Decision Review System and didn't opt for it in home or away bilateral series as they found the system not to be full proof. It was under the coaching of Anil Kumble and leadership of Virat Kohli that India opted for the DRS against England in 2016 home Test series, and, from there onwards, it has been a constant in all the series that India have been part of.
The move by India to not use DRS untill 2016 was criticized for the longest period of time because of BCCI's resistance to the system, which was led by India's top cricketers after their dismal usage of DRS, known UDRS back in 2008, when the system was first used. Sachin Tendulkar, who was part of the 2008 Test series in Sri Lanka in which DRS was used, has revealed that either the Indian team didn't know to use the system properly or there was something wrong with the technology.
“When we went to Sri Lanka in 2008, it used to be called UDRS (Umpire Decision Review System). Anil was out captain at that time; he had played for India for 17-18 years by then. Rahul was there, Sourav was there, Laxman was there, I was there... Zaheer, Harbhajan... you name all these guys who were around for a good 10-15 years or even more.
“In that series, we had referred around 15 decisions (20 referrals in total) to the third umpire and out of those, we were awarded just one decision. So, either we didn’t know how to refer - not able to judge LBWs and these things - or there was something wrong with that system.
“That’s why we expressed displeasure to BCCI. That was for that particular series. Not that you expressed displeasure once it stays permanently. Even after that plenty of developments took place. That was the only time. At least I didn’t say that it shouldn’t happen or whatever," Tendulkar told Aakash Chopra on his YouTube channel, reported Hindustan Times.
One of the greatest cricketers to have played the game of cricket and a shrewd reader of the game, Tendulkar also asserted that he isn't very fond of umpire's call in DRS decisions for LBWs. Umpires call has generally been a talking point, with most of the cricket fans and pundits questioning its usage in the system of DRS.
“I just feel that when the ball pitches, its centre point, the ball has to pitch inside the line. But when the ball hits the stumps, it need not be to centre point. It could be centre point, it could be left side, ride side or even the bottom of the ball, whatever. When it hits the stumps, it hits from four different points. So whether it is hitting, 49 percent or 51 percent, it should be out.
“Why do players go to the third umpire? Because somebody is unhappy with the on-field decision. If a new cricket follower is watching, he would only think that ‘the on-field umpire is giving a decision and the ball is hitting the stumps on both occasions. Why is the first one out and not out now?’ So, if the technology is not full proof then we should have more responsibility towards it,” Sachin added.