Mystery solved as controversial Pat Cummins wicket explained


Former ICC umpire Simon Taufel has explained why Australian skipper Pat Cummins was given out on Day 4 of the Boxing Day Test against Pakistan at the MCG.

Cummins was given out caught behind off the bowling of Aamer Jamal, but immediately sent the decision for a review.

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The DRS showed no mark on Hotspot, but the faintest spike appeared on Snicko prompting umpire Michael Gough to keep his original decision.

Fans were left confused with replays showing a clear gap between bat and ball when the spike on Snicko appeared.

But there was a simple explanation provided by Taufel.

Snicko showed a clear spike, but there was a gap between bat and ball. Credit: Channel 7

“This has got to do with the calibration between sight and sound. Of course sound does travel at different speed to light,” he said on Channel 7.

“Before each day’s play, the technology providers do go out and calibrate the sounds particularly and so what we’re looking for is a spike as the ball goes past the bat or up to one frame past the bat which allows that distance between the noise and the stump microphone.”

Commentators Alison Mitchell and Greg Blewett agreed with the decision.

“That makes sense … that there is a frame allowed either side. I remember when that change came in just to make an allowance for the physics of it,” Mitchell said.

Blewett added: “Exactly right. Well explained by Simon. To the naked eye, the one frame where the spike is, you can see the ball is not next to the bat. Clear edge … straightaway, the umpire’s finger was up, Pakistan fielders were all up.”

Cummins (16) was the second wicket to fall early on Day 4 as the Aussies were eventually all out for 262.

Wicketkeeper Alex Carey (53) helped push Australia’s lead over the crucial 300-mark with his highest score since the first Test of the Ashes in June.

Star Pakistani quick Shaheen Afridi (4-76) made a welcome return to form with his best figures of the series, while fellow left-armer Mir Hamza (4-32) proved to be a serious handful.

Pakistan, who have lost 15-straight Tests in Australia, will need to create history to avoid going down 2-0 in the Benaud-Qadir series.

The highest successful fourth-innings chase at the MCG was England’s 7-332 in 1928.

The last team to score more than 300 in the fourth innings of a MCG Test was Pakistan in a losing cause back in 1990.

Carey’s crucial cameo takes pressure off the left-hander, who has been down on form with the bat and was dropped during Australia’s ODI World Cup campaign.

Alex Carey (c) posted his first half-century since the Ashes in the second innings against Pakistan. Credit: AAP

Carey followed up on Mitch Marsh’s good work on Thursday when the allrounder smashed a sparkling 96.

Marsh joined Steve Smith (50) at the crease when Australia were reeling at 4-16, but the pair put on a potentially matchwinning 153-run stand.

The 32-year-old was given a life when Australia were 4-46 when he was dropped by Abdullah Shafique in the slips cordon.

Shafique, who also dropped a simple chance on day one, was taken out of the slips on Friday and replaced by Babar Azam.

The former Pakistan captain hung onto a brillant catch to dismiss Mitchell Starc to help bring Australia’s innings to a closer end.

– With AAP

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