Bangladesh Cricket Board [BCB] have decided to lodge an official complaint with the ICC about “unbearable” sledging. Allegedly the sledging went back and forth between hosts South Africa and the Tigers for the duration of the first Test at Durban.
Bangladesh skipper Mominul Haque accused the umpires of bias, of paying no heed to the ‘abuse’ being dealt out by the South Africans. “Sledging is a normal thing. But if it comes to the stage of abuse, that is very bad,” Haque said. “I think they abused us in the worst manner and umpires did not notice.”
Yunus Jalal, chief of operations at BCB, shed more light on the matter in an interview with ESPNCricinfo. “Sledging definitely took place from both sides, but when they started it and took it overboard, we complained to the umpires,” Jalal explained. “It wasn’t acceptable. We properly condemn it.”
Jalal pointed out an incident on the field where the SA players surrounded Mamudul Hasan when he went out to bat, alleging that the umpires placed blame on the Bangladesh side instead of tempering the SA players. “They surrounded [Mahmudul Hasan] Joy when he went out to bat,” Jalal said. “They were saying something. He couldn’t say anything back since he is a junior player. It was deplorable. Instead of controlling the situation, the umpires warned our players whenever we made complaints against the sledging.”
BCB has already complained about poor umpiring calls favouring SA in the ODI series
Bangladesh have had a controversial tour of South Africa so far. The BCB has already lodged an official complaint about biased umpiring after the three-match ODI series, which witnessed at least seven umpiring inconsistencies favouring South Africa. Marais Erasmus and Adrian Holdstock were the umpires in question, both South Africa born. The ICC gave up its practice of neutral umpires in 2020, in light of restrictions posed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Yunus Jalal was firm on his stance about the poor umpiring calls, further saying, ” We have to accept the umpires’ decisions, but the ICC must reinstate neutral umpires.” He added, “We have already lodged one complaint about the umpiring after the ODI series. The match referee [Andy Pycroft] had an argument with our manager Nafees Iqbal, but then we gave him a written complaint. We will lodge another official complaint about this Test match.”
Bangladesh collapsed for 53 in the fourth innings at Durban, in pursuit of 274. The Tigers began the morning session on the third day, already 3 down for just 11, and were bowled out within 55 minutes. SA used just two bowlers in tandem, spiners Simon Harmer taking three wickets and Keshav Maharaj ripping through the order for his first ever 7-wicket haul.