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‘Don’t think they have got it fully right this time’: Shane Warne on World Test Championship

The debate over the overthrow in the last over of the final of the 2019 World Cup refuses to die down. While some believe England shouldn’t have got the overthrow boundary, others feel it was a decision made keeping the rules in mind and New Zealand just have their luck to blame. While the MCC has promised to review the decision in their next meeting, the clubs World Cricket committee member Shane Warne believes it should have been a dead ball the moment the throw hit Ben Stokes’ bat.

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Warne — a part of the MCC committee which will review the decision — said that the spirit of the game calls for a ball to be called dead the moment a throw hits a batsman, irrespective of whether it goes for a boundary or not.

“Well I am on the committee that reviews it and we are doing that (smiles), I think the law of the game is pretty right. I suggested that it should be a dead ball at all times once it hits the body of the batsman whether it goes to the boundary or it doesn’t. It should be a dead ball and you cannot run. I think that is the spirit of the game,” he pointed.

A known lover of the longest format of the game, Warne is super excited to see the start of the World Test Championship, but feels the ICC could have marketed it better.

“I like the World Test Championship a lot and I wish the ICC would have marketed it a lot more and put some more money behind it to push it out more than they have. Yes, I like the context it brings in and that all Test matches count. I am sure in the coming years, they will get it right as I don’t think they have got it fully right this time,” he said.

Asked about the numbers on the jerseys — quite a debate among former players — the former Australia player said he doesn’t mind having numbers on the back and wants them even on the jumpers.

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“I don’t mind the numbers in Test cricket as I think it is easier for the fans to identify the players so I have no issue with it. I think they should have it on the jumpers as well because you can’t see the numbers once the players put on the jumpers,” he smiled.

Another raging debate has been the quality of umpiring in recent times and once again, Warne makes no bones about the fact that world cricket needs the best in the business to be manning the game at all times.

“Yes, in the MCC meeting the point was tabled and we had a long discussion on this. We just want the best umpires at all times and whether that means an Indian umpire can adjudicate in an India Test match or an Australian umpire can officiate in a Boxing Day Test or an English umpire can be umpiring at Lord’s and so on. We just want the best umpires and it needs a little bit more discussion.

“But with so much technology around like the DRS and all, I think generally you want the best umpires umpiring at all times because so far in the Ashes it has been…hasn’t been the best,” he rued.

While the umpiring standards have disappointed the legend, he is extremely happy with the way the Australian team has made it’s way back into world cricket post the Sandpaper Gate fiasco.

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“Over the last year or so, the Aussies have looked inside and tried to figure out who they want to be and how they want to play their cricket etc. I think they have become a very good side again. Their bowling has always been very good, but their batting with Smith and Warner back in, emergency of Mathew Wade and Travis Head has made them a very good side again. And I think they will become one of the best sides in world cricket again,” he explained.

Warne is a brand ambassador for Rajasthan Royals and asked on his role in making Team RR a global brand, he said: “I think the Royals are a global brand and we are doing more than any other franchise in spreading the word globally. We are looking at the States apart from starting the academy in UK which is going so well. So many young boys and girls are here and I am trying to help spread the word globally for Royals and it has been great fun.”


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