India accept DRS for England test series

BCCI approved the DRS for the India-England Test series, which begins on 9 November in Rajkot, on trial basis


India has used DRS in only two test series, in 2008 against Sri Lanka, where the system was first introduced to world cricket, and in 2011 in England. Photo: Reuters
India has used DRS in only two test series, in 2008 against Sri Lanka, where the system was first introduced to world cricket, and in 2011 in England. Photo: Reuters

New Delhi: India will use the Decision Review System (DRS) in a home Test cricket series for the first time against England next month.

However, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) said DRS will be on trial in the five-match series while it evaluates improvements in the system. The inconsistency in the predictive path of the ball after delivery, and impact in lbw decisions, was long a bone of contention for the BCCI.

International Cricket Council and Hawk-Eye officials met with BCCI officials on Thursday to address their long-held concerns and suggestions.

BCCI President Anurag Thakur said they were happy with Hawk-Eye’s upgrades of DRS.

“Based on the performance of the system and the feedback, further continuation (after) the forthcoming series will be decided,” Thakur said. “We recognize the enhanced role of technology in sport.”

India has used DRS in only two test series, in 2008 against Sri Lanka, where the system was first introduced to world cricket, and in 2011 in England. However, in that series, lbw decisions were out of the purview of the DRS. India has adhered to the use of DRS in ICC events.

The BCCI’s decision means there will be uniformity in test cricket across the world, with the exception of recent test series in Zimbabwe, where expenses were an issue.

Key changes in DRS for the India-England series include ultra-motion cameras to calculate predictive path and ball tracking in a more accurate manner, improved Hawk-Eye technology, and additional cameras to provide reliable spin reviews.

Another key feature will be Ultra-Edge technology to determine impact point in lbw decisions, and ensuring that post-impact balls do not affect the predicted path. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology approved this feature, and the BCCI accepted its report.

India coach Anil Kumble, also the head of the ICC cricket committee, and test skipper Virat Kohli are said to have played key roles in the BCCI decision.

Before taking over as coach in June, Kumble visited MIT to understand the changes made to the system.

The first test starts on 9 November in Rajkot.

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