Tom Curran’s umpiring behavior is more problematic than it seems, and the game cannot put up with it.

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Tom Curran

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Australia’s junior sports, which include cricket and rugby league, struggle to find umpires.

Referees, umpires, or whatever term you want to use, are there to decide whether a rule has been broken intentionally or not. Match officials are frequently hated and respected at the same time. All match officials should be respected, regardless of the decision’s validity, if only to set an example of proper interaction with officials for the younger players.

Officials at matches do make errors. Since they are only human, they must take accountability for their errors, especially if those errors determine the outcome of the match. They will only get more respect and status among other players in the game if they show that they understand the seriousness of their choices.

But the way the players react to their calls shows everyone who’s watching—especially the juniors—how these referees ought to be handled.

Consider Tom Curran, who was banished for four matches after threatening an official. After watching the video, Curran feels lucky that he has only dropped four games rather than more. In any format of cricket, his disrespectful reaction to the umpire, who was carrying out his duties appropriately, is unacceptable.

The act of Curran highlights a basic and increasingly prevalent issue in cricket and sports in general: the choices made by referees are not always the whole story. The truth of what the bowler or batter observed, or what they saw, is likewise valid.

This issue persists in both lower and upper classes, independent of the presence of the Decision Review System (DRS). The desire to try to rig the system and make the DRS work for oneself, or a glaring lack of faith in the person on the other end, is the root cause of this problem’s spread.

International athletes—those at the top who ought to serve as role models for others in the lower divisions—dispute the umpires’ rulings the most. On the first day of the Boxing Day Test, Steve Smith essentially laughed at the umpire’s call to award him LBW before reconsidering it.

Ball-tracking revealed that the six-setter would be completely missing the stumps, confirming Smith’s intuition. The Decision Review System (DRS) was created to eliminate howlers like Smith. Smith, however, showed disrespect for the umpire by mocking the official’s call and believing the ball would go over the stumps. Any young cricket player watching would assume that if Smith made the call, it must be okay to scoff at the umpire’s ruling.

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