Australian captain Ricky Ponting was involved in an umpiring row as he held up the game for several minutes after he was unhappy with the Umpire Decision Review System (UDRS) on the fourth day of the first cricket Test against New Zealand in Wellington.
The incident took place when off-spinner Nathan Hauritz appealed for the wicket of Brendan McCullum, who padded up without playing a stroke on 52, at the Basin Reserve on Monday.
Pakistan umpire Asad Rauf gave the batsman not out and Ponting called for a video referral under the UDRS.
However with winds blowing across the stadium at 130 kmph, as Wellington is one of the most windiest places, the Virtual-Eye cameras weren’t able to provide an accurate projection of the path of the ball towards the stumps.
Third umpire Aleem Dar of Pakistan upheld Rauf’s decision and skipper Ponting held up the game for several minutes as he argued with Rauf and fellow umpire Ian Gould of England.
Match referee Javagal Srinath said all of the cameras were shaking.
“It is a very unusual day, a very, very unusual day. I just went down and briefed the teams so that they should not be taken aback if the pictures are not coming and how are they making this decision,” Srinath was quoted as saying in the Sydney Morning Herald.
“If we can’t decide, the challenge is null and void and they get it back.”
Srinath said two cameras side-on to the wicket, used for run outs, no-balls and wides, had been taken down.
Ground staff had a tough time battling the strong winds, with one worker hanging on grimly to the covers as he was dragged about five metres, narrowly avoiding slamming into the boundary fence.
“The ball-tracking cameras were blown so badly by the winds, which are upwards of 130 kilometres an hour, that it could not successfully track the ball through the air,” Sky Television’s cricket executive producer James Cameron said.
“They’re still operational, they’re still up and tracking, but they’re treating it on a case by case basis. If they’re getting blown around too much as it happened in that case, there’s nothing we can do about it,” he said.