With the World Cup in all its triumph, tragedy and controversy over, the focus now turns to what can be described as the real pinnacle of cricket, at least in Australia and England.
It’s safe to say Australian cricket has a number of significant issues to manage this summer.
The two key issues for me are getting a competitive team together to face India in the Test series, then making sure we have our best squads for the World Cup and Ashes series in England.
Along the way, we have the JLT Cup, the Sheffield Shield and the BBL to help selectors get an idea about where players are at that might be chances to make any one of our three national cricket teams.
All of these domestic competitions have TV coverage now that the new broadcast deal has been reached with Channel 7/Foxtel, which brings me to the point of this article.
Why isn’t this technology being used to help umpires make correct decisions?
There have been two decisions that have been made over the past few days that highlight the point I’m trying to make: Travis Head’s highly questionable LBW decision against WA and that incredible caught behind decision Joe Burns copped against NSW. In Head’s case, he has to make a lot of runs to be a lock for the first Test – Langer has made that very clear – but for his confidence and proof he’s good enough at Test level, a chance to make a big hundred would have helped him no end.
In Burns case, he’d have to be in the frame for an opening spot, but what chance does he have of showing his wares to selectors if he gets an absolute howler from an umpire? I realize selections should not be based on one inning, but the selectors must have been lining up to watch Burns and Matt Renshaw against the Australian attack and they saw Burns for exactly nine balls.
What if the correct decision of not out was made and he went on to get a big score?
It should surely be a simple matter for batting referrals to become part of Shield cricket at least, now that all games have TV coverage. Cricket Australia needs to make a change to its rules so players can ask for a decision to be reviewed (DRS) where TV coverage allows.
If it helps selectors choose the best players for our teams, why wouldn’t we use it?