The debate surrounding the soft signal rule was back in full flow after Surya Kumar Yadav was controversially given out during the final T-20 game between England and India last week. Courtesy of the soft signal, Yadav had to walk back to the pavilion as multiple replays did suggest that the catch was not clean. This dismissal once again brought the soft signal rule into the spotlight. According to Cricbuzz, ICC is looking to revise this rule.
During a virtual meeting of ICC’s board on Thursday, this rule was extensively decided. Since the board has asked for amendments to this rule, ICC’s Chief Executive Committee will consider this proposition and then the board will make the final decision.
As per this rule, if on field umpire has given out/not out for a catch, then the third umpire can reverse this decision if there is conclusive evidence. However, on-field umpires are often found in a sticky situation regarding soft signals when the catches are taken at the boundary or away from their vicinity. In such a scenario, making a decision one way or the other without seeing video footage is harsh for both teams.
It remains to be seen what amendments ICC is planning to make to this rule. Completely removing this rule would help both players and umpires to get more clarity. The third umpire will be able to look at replays and give correct decisions instead of outcome relying solely on the soft signal.
Meanwhile, ICC is reportedly going to stick with the umpire’s call in DRS. This rule is also going to be discussed in ICC’s Chief Executive Committee after ICC’s Cricket Committee decided to persist with the rule after consulting former captains, umpires, and match referees. Indian captain had recently been critical about soft signal and umpire’s call rules.
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