Controversy erupted on Day two of the ongoing first Ashes Test between Australia and England at the Gabba on Thursday as Ben Stokes’ no-ball denied the visitors a crucial wicket of David Warner, who was batting on 17 at that time. It was later revealed that Stokes had overstepped each of the previous three deliveries, but none of them were called no-balls. Things got even worse when Australia’s Channel 7 highlighted that Stokes had bowled a total of 14 no-balls in the opening session, of which only two were called.
England rued the missed opportunity as Warner went on to smash 94 as Australia reached 343/7, leading England by 196 at stumps on Day two in Brisbane.
Several former and current cricketers have criticised the umpires, with former Australia captain Ricky Ponting describing it as “pathetic officiating.”
New Zealand all-rounder James Neesham, who is known for his outspoken and witty posts on social media, also reacted to the controversy.
“When the only explanation is “uhhhh I forgot that was my job lol”,” Neesham tweeted, quoting a compilation video of Stokes’ no-balls.
Cricket Australia later revealed that due to a technological fault, the third-umpire, Paul Wilson, couldn’t review ball-by-ball TV replays to check if bowlers were over-stepping the crease, leaving it to the on-field umpires to make the calls.
England are in deep trouble in Brisbane after openers Rory Burns (13) and Haseeb Hameed (27) lost their wickets to Pat Cummins and Mitchell Starc, respectively, after Lunch on Day three.
Earlier, Travis Head slammed a brilliant 152 as Australia managed to stitch a total of 425, for a first innings lead of 278 runs. England were initially bowled out for 147 in the first innings.
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