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Holder questions ICC’s COVID rule on umpires

West Indian Test captain Jason Holder has left unimpressed at ICC allowing local umpires only in international cricket amid pandemic.

The International Cricket Council took a series of initiatives to make international cricket happen during the pandemic. Allowing umpires from the hosting nation only is one of them, meaning the lack of quality umpiring remains. Which is why ICC has allowed teams to have 3 DRS per Test innings and 2 in an ODI innings.

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West Indies did not enjoy the umpiring in the recently concluded T20I and Test tour in New Zealand.

“The umpiring, Polly [Kieron Pollard] for sure had a few question marks over the umpiring in the T20 series. But look, I try to be as far down the line. What I would say about the umpiring, or the situation of the umpires, is that if we can travel and do a quarantine, I don’t see why an opposing (overseas) umpire can’t travel and do the quarantine,” Holder said after West Indies’ 0-2 defeat in the Tests.

Since the return of international cricket in July when Holder’s men toured England for three Tests, touring teams and the hosts have been in bio-bubble during various affairs. The Windies captain thinks overseas umpires should also do the quarantine as the players.

“I still don’t understand a situation where we’re just having home umpires. If players are making the sacrifice and going on the road and continuing cricket then I feel as though the umpires should do the same. Even if it’s a case where you get a home and an opposing umpire to do a Test match then I think that’s fair.

“The umpiring in the Test series, I can’t really say it’s been horrible. Obviously, in any Test series, you get decisions that you would always question, but the umpires put up their hands and did a reasonable job.”

Thus far, the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020 in the UAE in September-November was the exception where international umpires featured.

West Indies’ next assignment is in Bangladesh for three Tests, three ODIs and two T20Is in January-February 2021.

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