I missed the dismissal of Ricky Ponting last night in the First Test, however it sounds like yet another controversy. The bowler appealed for a return catch which South African umpire, Rudi Kertzen, ruled not out.
The radio commentary at this point admitted that they had no television coverage in the commentary box and had to rely on what was shown on the electronic scoreboard. Apparently showing this to the crowd was very quickly curtailed, suggesting that it was indeed controversial.
I think this is a very sad state of affairs when the ground staff have to cut short a replay because of the volatility of a crowd. Now before people start screaming at me, I am not suggesting that Indian supporters are alone in potentially poor behaviour. I well remember listening to descriptions on the radio of Australia players hiding in a dressing room back in about 1979 when a West Indian crowd were rioting. What about the Australian crowd throwing beer bottles at English fast bowler John Snow after he felled Australian tailender Terry Jenner with a bouncer back in 1970-71 with English captain Ray Illingworth leading his team off the ground? Shouting abuse at the opposition is part of the fun of being in the crowd. There always seem to be one or two players that you just love to hate. But acting violently is a pretty different and unacceptable kettle of fish.
Then the real surprise from the Australian Broadcasting Commission radio commentators over there in India - they had to rely on a telephone call from back in Australia to tell them exactly what that televised replay (available on a feed back here in Oz) was showing! Huh?
In the not-so-long-ago bad old days, television broadcasters had to take their own equipment to the sub-continent to broadcast cricket back to Australia or wherever. However the incredibly exciting and successful 20-20 cricket series in India earlier this year was broadcast all around the world. Surely the technology is in place there now to at least get a feed into the commentary boxes?