Cricket Umpire Nigel Llong had a forgettable Test match, the second of the Australia-New Zealand Test Series at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG). Llong attracted a lot of criticism for his poor calls in the Boxing Day Test match which saw the Kangaroos cruise to a 247 run win over New Zealand in the second Test match on Sunday.
Notably, Tom Blundell who scored a great hundred (121 runs) under pressure on the fourth day of the match, was stuck on the thigh guard by a Jamis Pattinson delivery when he was batting on 90.
Much to the disappointment of the batsman, Llong adjudged him leg before wicket. Blundell wasted no time in making use of the Decision Review System (DRS). The replays clearly showed that the ball would be way sailed way over the stumps.
Interestingly, this was not the first Nigel Llong call that raised eyebrows. Prior to this, Steve Smith and Nigel Llong had a long argument regarding their interpretation of the Dead ball rule after Llong signalled dead ball after a ball hit him and he decided to steal a run.
The decisions, in particular the leg before call, was criticised by commentators on air. Former Kiwi skipper Brendon McCullum slammed the umpire by saying, “That’s a terrible, terrible decision – not for the first time this Test.”
“It’s closer to being over shoulder height than it was to hitting the stumps,” he added.
Shane Warne also joined McCullum in criticising the decision made by the English umpire.
“Considering some of the ones Nigel Llong has given not out, it was pretty amazing he gave that out when it hit way above the pad,” he stated in a joking tone .
“It did slide but it was always a tad short,” commentator Michael Slater stated.
“Certainly the crowd gave (Llong) a jeer,” he added.
Despite Tom Blundell’s courageous efforts with the bat, Nathon Lyon and James Pattinson helped Australia win the second Test match at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) and take a 2-0 lead in the three match Test series.