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The Sanju Samson Catch: Was it Out or Not Out?

The Sanju Samson Catch: Was it Out or Not Out?

Umpiring controversies are not uncommon in cricket, especially in the IPL, with numerous incidents over the years. From unnoticed last-ball no-balls to contentious no-ball calls, these incidents have often sparked debate and discussion.

One such incident occurred during a match between Delhi Capitals (DC) and Rajasthan Royals (RR) in the 2022 season, where RR captain Sanju Samson found himself at the center of a controversial decision. Chasing a challenging target of 222, Samson’s aggressive innings had put RR in a commanding position. However, in the 16th over, Samson’s innings came to an end in a moment of high drama.

Facing a slower ball, Samson attempted a flat-batted shot down the ground but failed to connect cleanly. The ball went quickly towards Shai Hope at long-on, who took the catch just inside the boundary rope. Initially, it seemed like Hope had completed a clean catch, but a third TV angle raised doubts about whether he had touched the boundary cushions while completing the catch. Despite the uncertainty, the third umpire ruled Samson out based on the first two replays.

Samson, visibly frustrated, initially walked off but then returned to argue with the umpires. The situation escalated, with DC owners gesturing for Samson to leave the field. Eventually, Samson accepted the decision and left the field, although he was clearly unhappy with the turn of events.

The Controversial Sanju Samson Catch

The debate over whether Hope’s catch was clean ignited a firestorm of discussion, both on social media and in cricketing circles. RR’s head coach and Director of Cricket, Kumar Sangakkara, acknowledged the controversy but refused to blame the defeat on this incident. He emphasized that despite the dismissal, RR should have been able to finish the game but credited DC for their smart bowling.

On the other hand, DC’s assistant coach Pravin Amre defended the legality of the catch, praising Hope for his judgment and skill in taking the catch. He emphasized that the decision was made by the third umpire and should be respected.

While both teams stood by their opinions, the incident highlighted the issue of inconsistent umpiring decisions in the IPL. Despite the introduction of the Smart Review System to expedite third umpire calls, there are still instances of prolonged decisions, leading to criticism and debate.

Ultimately, DC emerged victorious in the match, thanks to some clever death bowling, but the controversy surrounding Samson’s catch is likely to remain a major talking point.

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