Sydney, March 21: Umpires of the 2015 cricket World Cup were left fuming after International Cricket Council (ICC) president Mustafa Kamal accused the umpires officiating the India-Bangladesh quarter-final match at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Thursday of carrying an agenda favouring India.
Bangladeshi cricket supporters objected to the decisions given in favour of India by the two umpires officiating in the match, Aleem Dar and Ian Gould and the ICC president even threatened to quit saying the ICC was becoming the Indian Cricket Council. It was alleged that India was deliberately being favoured because of the corporate interests.
Dar faced flak after he adjudged a delivery bowled against Indian batsman Rohit Sharma to be illegal because of its height but television replays said it was a genuine waist-high delivery. Sharma, who was batting on 90 then, went on to hit 137 and India beat Bangladesh by 109 runs to stop their dream run in this year's World Cup.
Kamal had taken over as the ICC president from NZ's Allan Isaac last June
During Bangladesh's batting also, a catch taken by Indian fielder Shikhar Dhawan close near the boundary was claimed to be an unjust one by the Bangaldeshis for they said Dhawan's leg had touched the boundary rope while taking the catch that dismissed in-form Mohammad Mahmudullah.
Soon after, Kamal stepped in and criticised the umpires and officials and also warned of investigation to see whether these decisions were given deliberately. " It seemed as if they had gone into the match with something in mind. I am speaking as a fan, not as the ICC president," Kamal said, adding that a dozen mistakes were made against his country.
The ICC later took a dig at Kamal, saying the latter's comments were "unfortunate" and made "in his personal capacity". Former South African cricketer David Richardson, who is the chief executive officer of the cricket's governing body, said such allegations against match officials are baseless and refuted them strongly.
The two umpires also reportedly expressed their disappointment over Kamal's remarks and even took them to be defamatory. They had even discussed the option to sue Kamal. If the duo takes a legal action against Kamal, it will be after Australia's Darrell Hair who had accused the ICC of racial discrimination after he was removed from the elite panel following the infamous forfeited Test between England and Pakistan in 2006.