Stokes questions DRS over Crawley’s lbw dismissal


Ben Stokes has questioned the DRS for giving Zak Crawley out lbw but does not believe it was the reason England lost the second Test in Visakhapatnam.

India levelled the series 1-1 with victory by 106 runs on day four, bowling the tourists out for 292 in pursuit of 399. Just as in the first innings, Crawley was the leading scorer, this time with 73, while no one else passed 36.

Crawley was holding firm as wickets fell around him in the morning session. At the end of the 42nd over, he was struck on the pad by a length delivery from Kuldeep Yadav, which was given not out on the field by standing umpire Marais Erasmus.

India captain Rohit Sharma took his time before asking for a review and was rewarded when Erasmus had to subsequently overturn his original decision. The contentious element seemed to be the impact of the ball into leg stump, which, to the England captain, looked far less certain than DRS’ projected path.

“Technology in the game is obviously there,” said Stokes at stumps. “Everyone has an understanding of the reasons it can never be 100% which is why we have the umpire’s call. That’s why it’s in place.

“When it’s not 100% as everyone says, I don’t think it’s unfair for someone to say ‘I think the technology has got it wrong on this occasion’. And that is my personal opinion. I will say that.

“But in a game full of ifs, buts and maybes, I am not going to say that’s the reason why we haven’t got the result we wanted. I’m just saying my personal opinion is that the technology has gone wrong on this occasion, and I think that’s fair to say.”

Crawley walked off with 205 still to get, closely followed by Jonny Bairstow five balls later, leaving England 194 for 6 going into the afternoon session. India needed just 26.4 overs to take the remaining four wickets to square matters ahead of a 10-day break in the series. The teams will meet again for the third Test in Rajkot, which begins on February 15.

Asked if he was looking to escalate his complaints, Stokes added: “You can’t really do much with things that have been and gone. A decision has been made, and you can’t really overturn a decision that has been made. That is where I stand on that.”

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