IPL 2019: How an umpiring error cost RCB the playoffs
The league stage of the IPL is over and we have got our top four teams for the playoffs. After a lot of permutations and combinations, it is the Sunrisers Hyderabad who has sneaked in as the fourth team with just 12 points. It is the first instance where a team with 12 points qualified for the playoffs.
Not only that but this has been the closest ever IPL because the team which has finished last has got just one fewer point than one of the teams that qualified.
Yes, you read that right, RCB who have finished with the wooden spoon have 11 points in 14 games which means if they could have won even one more game they would have got to 13 points and might have been the team to qualify.
Who would have thought of that when RCB lost six matches in a row in the beginning of the season? Nobody gave them a chance when they lost six out of six but now when you think about it, in the end it got really close. It can be traced down to the matter of a wrong umpiring decision. For that, we have to go back to the seventh match when the RCB team took on the Mumbai Indians at the Chinnaswamy stadium.
Chasing 188, RCB needed seven off the last ball when Lasith Malinga bowled a no-ball which was not called by the umpire. If the no-ball had been called, RCB would have got an extra delivery with five runs needing to win and most importantly AB de Villiers would have been back on strike.
De Villiers was batting on 70 so there was a high chance that he could hit the last ball out of the ground. Another interesting thing is that the upcoming ball would have been a free-hit. So even if the ball had hit the stumps and gone to the boundary, they would have gotten four runs which would have taken the game into the super-over, where anything can happen.
Virat Kohli was seen fuming in the post-match presentation after that game and rightly so. When you look back at it now, an umpiring error perhaps cost RCB a place in the playoffs. It might sound pretty speculative but it is a possibility.
These umpiring errors which cost the teams should be looked as eye-openers so that the quality of umpiring can be improved from the next year onwards.
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