Taufel abandons cautious instincts as mistakes pile up

Simon Taufel, who hails from Sydney, is one of the most highly regarded umpires in the world, but he has had a match at Trent Bridge that he will want to forget. On the first two days of this Third Test he confirmed his reputation of being an umpire who is reluctant to give batsmen out, which, generally speaking, is the accepted practice these days.

Simon Taufel, who hails from Sydney, is one of the most highly regarded umpires in the world, but he has had a match at Trent Bridge that he will want to forget. On the first two days of this Third Test he confirmed his reputation of being an umpire who is reluctant to give batsmen out, which, generally speaking, is the accepted practice these days.

Then, on the third morning, Graham Thorpe tried to flick a ball from James Franklin down the legside. The ball went through to Brendon McCullum who, together with the slips, appealed extravagantly for a catch. With the batsman turning his back on the umpire as he plays this particular stroke, it is not the easiest of decisions for the official.

For all that, Taufel's finger was up almost before the appeal had finished, suggesting that there was not the faintest shadow of doubt in the umpire's mind. Thorpe hesitated long enough to make it clear what he thought and the replays showed that the ball had touched Thorpe's trousers and not the bat on its way through.

Being an experienced umpire, it will not have taken Taufel long to realise that he had made a bad decision. It was now that his confidence will have begun to erode. The decision will have played on his mind and, as a result, it precipitated some more questionable decisions.

When Stephen Fleming was hit on the pad playing no stroke at Andrew Flintoff, Taufel raised his finger. This was a marginal decision and it was surprising that an umpire who is at heart a "not-outer" should have given Fleming out. The replay suggested the ball was too high and there should surely have been some doubt in the umpire's mind.

In Flintoff's next over Tauffel again raised his finger when Flintoff hit Nathan Astle on the pad with one the replay said would have just brushed leg stump. This was another surprise from a not-outer. Then just before the close he gave Scott Styris out caught behind when he flashed at a wide one from Steve Harmison that he clearly missed.

His confidence must have been shattered after all this and on the fourth morning Andrew Strauss became the victim of a third dreadful decision from Tauffel when he was given lbw to a ball which clearly pitched outside the leg stump. One bad match does not make him a bad umpire, but he will be glad to hang up his white coat for a bit.

Suggested Topics
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

The Greek referendum exposes a gaping hole at the heart of the European Union – its distinct lack of any genuine popular legitimacy

Gaping hole at the heart of the European Union

Treatment of Greece has shown up a lack of genuine legitimacy
Number of young homeless in Britain 'more than three times the official figures'

'Everything changed when I went to the hostel'

Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
Compton Cricket Club

Compton Cricket Club

Portraits of LA cricketers from notorious suburb to be displayed in London
London now the global money-laundering centre for the drug trade, says crime expert

Wlecome to London, drug money-laundering centre for the world

'Mexico is its heart and London is its head'
The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court that helps a winner keep on winning

The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court

It helps a winner keep on winning
Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate
Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

The science of swearing

What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
Africa on the menu: Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the continent

Africa on the menu

Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the hot new continent
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'