Sports Letter: Fast forward for video

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The Independent Online
Sir: Henry Blofeld states in his article 'Time for the video umpire' (12 February) that 'it is hard to find any reasonable objection', ie. to the use of a third umpire. I disagree with him entirely.

In all games, and in cricket more than most, chance, luck, the bounce of the ball, the rub of the green - call it what you will - is an integral and unavoidable part of the contest. Human beings competing against human beings, and human beings adjudicating and ensuring fair play are part and parcel of the excitement; the joys and sorrows of competing. To be able to forget a bad decision and to get on with the game is a hallmark of a good sportsman and sportswoman. Dare I say that it could be character-building.

The use of machines in such encounters is to be deprecated. Luck, both good and bad, tends to even itself out over a period of time.

Yours faithfully,




12 February