TV umpire mistake gives Proteas breakthrough

2014-12-19 13:45

The West Indies suffered a poor television umpire decision to stumble to lunch on 110 for two, trailing by 442 runs in their first innings, on day three of the first Test against South Africa in Centurion today.

The West Indian openers Kraigg Brathwaite and Devon Smith came out in determined fashion and brought up their 50 stand off 87 balls.

They moved to 72 without loss when Vernon Philander appealed for a caught behind as Smith went on the pull. The ball went straight through him and wicketkeeper AB de Villiers took the catch.

Umpire Billy Bowden gave it not out, but the Proteas, convinced they heard a sound, went up for a review. Television replays revealed a sound when the ball clipped the player’s hip, but nothing when the ball moved past the willow.

Television umpire, Australian Paul Reiffel, inexplicably, decided to overturn to the original decision to send Smith back to the changeroom for 35.

Philander struck again in his next over, this time legitimately, as he found the edge of Brathwaite’s bat. Captain Hashim Amla took a good slip catch to dismiss the batsman for 34 as the West Indies fell to 73 for two.

Philander ended the session with figures of 2/19 from nine overs, including three maidens.

Leon Johnson (27) and Marlon Samuels (six) were the unbeaten batsmen in the middle at the interval.

The West Indies started their first innings in the morning, in reply to South Africa’s mammoth 552 for five declared.

The Proteas took to the field without wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock, who injured his ankle in a warm-up session before the start of play. De Villiers took the gloves in De Kock’s absence.

Faf du Plessis was also missing from the field as he had gone to for scans after complaining of abdominal pains.

Temba Bavuma and Robin Peterson replaced the two absent players in the field.

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