Former Indian cricketer Irfan Pathan does not seem to be happy with Steve Bucknor despite the fact that the former ICC umpire has accepted the errors he committed during the 2008 Sydney Test between India and Australia.
Notably, Bucknor made as many as seven mistakes in the match, which created controversy for biased umpiring and cost India the match by 122 runs. Arguably the biggest umpiring howler of the match was when Bucknor refused to give Andrew Symonds out caught behind when he was batting on 30. The Aussie cricketer later went on to score 162 run which shifted the balance of the match towards Australia and they sealed a win.
Although more than a decade has passed since the infamous Test, wounds of the Test are fresh for Pathan. Recently, Bucknor, in an interview with Mid-Day admitted his mistakes but Pathan is still not pleased.
“No matter how much you accept your mistakes, what’s done is done, we lost the Test match. I remember, I played my first Test in Australia – that was in Adelaide, my debut game [in 2003] – and we won that Test after 21  years in Australia. And losing a Test match, just because of umpiring errors? Not going to make any difference, no matter what umpires say now,” Pathan said on the Cricket Connected Show on Star Sports.
“As a cricketer, we’re used to getting bad decisions, sometimes in our bowling, sometimes in our batting. And we get frustrated by that and then we forget about it. But this Sydney Test match, it was not just one mistake. There were about seven mistakes that cost us the game. There were mistakes where Andrew Symonds was playing, and he got out nearly, I remember, three times, and the umpire didn’t give him out.”
“He was the Man of the Match, we lost by 122 runs. If only one decision against Andrew Symonds would have been corrected, we would have won that game easily,” Pathan said.
“It was not just frustration. For the first time, I saw Indian cricketers were angry. Fans had only one thing in mind – that they [umpires] were doing it purposely. Obviously, as a cricketer, we can’t think like that.
“We’ve to think, ‘OK. These things happen, and we’ve to move forward’. But seven mistakes? Are you kidding me? That was unbelievable and indigestible for us.”