No ‘over-reaction’ to Sri Lanka – Australia farce: Speed

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, April 30, 2007 (AFP) – Officials whose error led to the farcical finish in the World Cup Final do still have a future in cricket, according to Malcolm Speed.

The International Cricket Council chief executive said the five-man playing control team led by match referee Jeff Crowe were full of regret for their roles in the bizarre spectacle that saw Australia ‘twice’ win a record-breaking third straight title and left losers Sri Lanka having to bat out the closing overs in darkness on a Kensington Oval ground with no floodlights.

Somehow a group featuring West Indian umpire Steve Bucknor, standing in a record fifth World Cup Final, managed to overlook a basic playing condition for one-day internationals.

This states that once 20 overs have been bowled in both innings enough cricket has been played to have a result declared under the Duckworth/Lewis system for rain-affected games.

Instead the teams, following instructions from Bucknor and Pakistan’s Aleem Dar, the other on-field umpire, came back on Saturday to bowl three more overs in a match Australia then won by 53 runs under the D/L system.

Speed, who came through a moment of farce him