The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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I’ve never been a great believer in technology: Chappell
- ‘I’m not sure whether you’ll get to a situation where it’s going to be perfect’

Kingston: Nobody sees Greg Chappell as a conservative coach, but his views on more technology for decision-making is bound to be labelled conservative. In fact, he’s horrified at the prospect of the human element being gradually reduced.

The International Cricket Council, though, is moving in that direction.

“Look, I’ve never been a great believer in technology... All umpires make mistakes, but the human touch is one of the attractions of the game... I’m not sure whether you’ll ever get to a situation where it’s going to be perfect and I’m not sure whether we should be trying to make it so,” Chappell told The Telegraph.

Speaking at the Hilton in the lead-up to the one-day series, he added: “I accept technology has worked well in some areas, like run outs and stumpings... However, if four people are watching a replay on TV, it’s possible there could be a 2-2 divide or a 3-1 split over a decision... Trying to be perfect is an impossible goal...”

According to Chappell, there have been instances when technology suggested the ball would miss the stumps when, in fact, it hit them. In much the same way, there have been occasions when technology indicated the ball would hit the stumps when there was “no way in the world” it could.

“People tell me there’s a lot of money at stake and that careers could be marred... Perhaps, that is so... As for me, I’ve got to be convinced that more technology actually is in the best interests of the game... At the moment, I’m not,” Chappell declared.

He added: “One of the great things about cricket is the courage and discipline it takes to accept a wrong decision and pledge to try your best in the next innings... The trouble really is that, as human beings, we tend to notice our bad luck but won’t talk about the good fortune...”

In Chappell’s view, players get the umpires they dese- rve.

As he put it: “If you’ll put them under pressure, they’re bound to make mistakes... Rather than trying to correct that with more technology, the players need to be educated (on appealing)... I think the umpires, who always have the TV cameras on them, do a fantastic job...

“My impression over the last 14-15 years is that umpires get between 80-90 per cent of the decisions right... That’s a very high percentage... I would have been for more technology had it been 50-50... Let’s not try to solve a problem which really isn’t that big...”

Chappell declined to comment on Steve Bucknor’s allegations (about doctoring against TV producers) saying he hadn’t read what the record-scripting umpire had said. “It’s not going to be proper to react,” he signed off.

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