World Cricket News

Smith, Warner embarrassed, Australia players booed as Siraj’s review forces them to return to field in WTC 2023 final

The Australian players began to walk off the field, presuming they had dismissed Siraj, only to be forced to return after the batter’s successful review.

The third day of the World Test Championship final between India and Australia saw a valiant fightback from Ajinkya Rahane (89) and Shardul Thakur (51), as the two steered India to a competitive score in the first innings. After KS Bharat was dismissed early on Day 3, Shardul, alongside the comeback man Rahane, forged a brilliant 109-run stand for the seventh wicket. Thanks to the duo, India finished at 296 but a rather unusual incident took place right towards the end of India’s innings, leading to boos from the Indian fans towards the Aussie players.

During the 68th over, Mohammed Siraj, India’s no.11, was adjudged leg-before wicket. In real time, it did look plumb and the umpire raised the finger straightaway, leading to the Australian players departing towards the dressing room. Siraj, however, opted for a review almost immediately but the Australian players continued to walk regardless.

Smith, Warner embarrassed, Australia players booed as Siraj's review forces them to return to field in WTC 2023 final

Also Read: WTC 2023 Final guide and preview — ‘No surprises’: In-form Aussie left out as Cummins reveals line-up

The replay showed a thick inside edge off Siraj’s bat before the ball hit his pads, prompting the umpire Chris Gaffaney to change his decision. It was then, when boos erupted throughout the Oval stadium, aimed at the Australian players – many of them had already reached the boundary line and were forced to sprint back into their positions, albeit with a sheepish smile on their faces.

India added two more runs to their total following the incident – both from Mohammed Shami – before the batter was eventually caught-behind by Alex Carey.

Australia took an enormous 173-run lead in the first innings but India avoided a follow-on, thanks to Rahane and Shardul’s heroics in the first session of the day.

Earlier, Australia put a colossal score of 469 on the board with Travis Head (163) and Steve Smith (121) scoring centuries. India, then, endured a batting-order collapse early in the innings; none of their top-4 managed to cross the 20-run mark, and all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja was the side’s top-scorer on Day 2 with a quickfire 48 off 51 balls.

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