Pollard welcomes use of DRS at World T20

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West Indies captain Kieron Pollard has welcomed the addition of the Decision Review System (DRS) to the upcoming Men’s World T20, set to bowl off on October 17.

The International Cricket Council (ICC) this week announced that teams will be permitted two reviews each per innings at the global event, continuing the playing conditions that have been in place since June 2020.

Pollard, speaking at a virtual press conference on Tuesday, said: “In terms of the DRS, I think it’s good (to have it available), because what we want as cricketers and individuals is to get the right decision.”

“Whichever way to get the right decision- if it’s the use of the technology- I think we’re all for that because we want to have consistency going forward. So we actually look forward to that.”

With the advent of the pandemic halting the use of neutral umpires in bilateral series, in turn putting less experienced umpires in the middle, teams were given an extra review per innings across all formats – effectively three reviews per innings in Test matches and two in white-ball internationals.

While the ICC’s Elite Panel of Umpires and Match Referees has been brought together for the T20 World Cup in the United Arab Emirates and Oman, ICC acting CEO Geoff Allardice confirmed the extra review would remain in place for the tournament.

“Rather than treat this tournament differently, we’ve just continued on with what’s been in place for the last 12 or 18 months,” Allardice said on Sunday.

It will be the first Men’s T20 World Cup to use DRS.

Teams will be permitted two reviews each per innings at the global event (Photo by Mark Fletcher/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Allardice said the ICC hoped neutral umpires would be used globally sooner rather than later, but ultimately it would have to be looked at on a “country-by-country” basis given the varying COVID-19 restrictions at play.

“We’re able to get all of our Elite Panel umpires here and our referees here to officiate in this tournament. The UAE is a country that is fairly straightforward now to move in and out of. The issue is in other countries which have different levels of restriction.

“Our position has been we’ll be trying to use neutral officials wherever the circumstances allow. In a number of countries, there are still restrictions that make that difficult and moving umpires in as individuals is a bit different to team movements and we’ve found that over the last few months.”

Allardice also praised the performances of the home country umpires over the past 18 months, backed by the usage of DRS.

“The home country umpires have performed extremely well over the last 18 months and supported by DRS, whether we need an extra review or not I think we’re in a rhythm with that at the moment.

“The aim is to get neutral officials back once a lot of those restrictions are lifted. It may happen more after this tournament but it’s very much a country-by-country assessment.”

West Indies are the defending champions, having won the last World Cup in 2016. This year’s tournament will conclude on November 14.

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