In a bizarre incident, the umpires surprisingly decided to call for lunch when India were just two runs short of winning the second One-Day International against South Africa at Centurion on Sunday (February 4).
The game was already extended by four overs to make sure the match ends as quickly as possible when India were batting on 93/1 after 15 overs in pursuit of a modest 119. However, Shikhar Dhawan and Virat Kohli failed to score those 26 runs in the four overs. But with just two runs remaining, it was expected that the umpires will allow one more over to go through. However, to everybody’s surprise, Aleem Dar and Adrian Holdstock decided to go for lunch, leaving everyone stunned.
The players had no choice but to leave the ground while the commentators criticised the decision. Not surprisingly, majority of the spectators also left the stadium as the umpires bizarrely called for the 40-minute break when a couple of balls would have decided the fate of the game. Shikhar Dhawan and Virat Kohli returned after the break and completed the proceedings without much trouble to take India home by nine wickets.
Meanwhile, the umpire’s decision of calling for the lunch is drawing criticism from all quarters and former England skipper Michael Vaughan also slammed the decision.
“Cricket is bloody bonkers … Lunch break taken with 2 runs required for Victory … Surely common sense comes into play !!!!!!!!! ,” Vaughan wrote on Twitter.
Cricket is bloody bonkers … Lunch break taken with 2 runs required for Victory … Surely common sense comes into play !!!!!!!!! #SAvsIND
— Michael Vaughan (@MichaelVaughan) February 4, 2018
Meanwhile, coming to the game, Yuzvendra Chahal’s maiden five-wicket haul in ODIs and Kuldeep Yadav’s three-fer had helped India bowl out the Proteas for a modest 118 inside 33 overs.
In reply, India started shakily with Rohit Sharma departing for just 15 before Dhawan and Kohli stitched together an unbeaten stand of 94 to help the team win the game and take go 2-0 up in the six-match series.