‘TV replays are good for the game’

Tim Murtagh’s exclusive Middlesex CC column

There’s been a lot of argument recently about the decision review system, but surely anything that gets you the correct decision has to be good for the game.

India seem to be unsure about whether they want the system used in the Test series next month, but in my opinion it’s added something to the game for both players and spectators.

I’m not sure of the exact statistics, but I’ve read that the system has corrected something like 98 per cent of decisions.

When you think you’ve got a wicket and everyone looks up to the big screen it makes it more interesting. Also, the system takes out that factor of teams complaining they’ve been unlucky and making excuses.

You take the rough with the smooth and people may say decisions balance out over a series or a season, but I’m not sure they do – you can get three or four bad decisions against you and suddenly the series has gone.

Realistically, that’s probably the approach we now have to take to this year’s t20 tournament, it would seem – we’re going to struggle to make the quarter-finals after losing so many games.

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I’d imagine we might look to put a couple of the younger players in for the remaining games – but we’ve got other competitions to focus on in the meantime.

Still, we did at least pick up another win against Kent over the weekend and it was good to see Paul Stirling produce a great knock before the rain came down.

We’ve been waiting for Stirlo to fire like that all year and he played some great shots against quality international bowlers as well like Azhar Mahmood, Wahab Riaz and Charl Langeveldt.

Scott Newman played a good anchor role at the other end and we were well on the way to winning it anyway, without the Duckworth-Lewis calculation.

It’s been a good week for Middlesex openers, with Sam Robson playing so well in the County Championship win over Kent – the way he and Scott opened in both innings set up the game for us.

Sam also took a couple of great catches and he’s proved a real find in that slip cordon. I’ve known Sam since my time in Australia a few years back, when we were playing for the Dolphins club in Eastern Suburb, and I’m glad we were able to get him over here – he’s come on leaps and bounds.

At the moment, we’re in the middle of another vital game against Gloucestershire and we had a real boost on Monday when Northamptonshire lost for the first time this season.

That hasn’t done us any harm – we want to finish top of the division and we’re looking to chase them down, so hopefully we can take advantage.

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