Australia in SA

What is Smith's hot spot?

2009-03-04 18:05
Graeme Smith (Gallo Images)

Durban - South Africa captain Graeme Smith is pleased 'hot spot' technology will be used for umpire referral decisions in the second Test against Australia starting on Friday.

'Hot spot', an infrared camera that detects ball impacts, was unavailable for Australia's first-Test victory in Johannesburg.

"You've got to have all the technology available for it (referrals) to work," Smith told reporters on Wednesday. "For fine edges, or edges from the bat on to the pad, it's very difficult without the proper technology.

"If 'hotspot' is available then it's fine but if it's not, then I don't think you should have referrals."

Smith said he was perturbed by the referral system, which is being used on a trial basis, in the first test.

"I just couldn't seem to get it right so I'm a bit more skeptical and frustrated about it. But that's probably because our percentages were so low in terms of decisions going our way. It's frustrating when all the technology is not there," said Smith.

Smith's counterpart Ricky Ponting said the new system put extra responsibility on the shoulders of the skipper.

Real challenge

"It's a real challenge for the captain because you have to talk to your wicketkeeper, bowler, first slip or the other batsman very quickly," said Ponting.

"It all happens so quickly ... you only have a few seconds to decide what to do."

Ponting said he was satisfied with the system in the opening test.

"I think it worked well ... but obviously because the decisions went more in our favour. We must remember it is still a trial. When the third umpire came in, there were some negatives and some positives. We shouldn't expect every decision to be perfect but hopefully it eradicates the really obvious mistake," he said.

Referrals have been the source of much debate in the test series between West Indies and England.

"I think it was used better in our game than in the West Indies," said Ponting. "It looked like there were some pretty ordinary decisions made there (in the Caribbean).

"Our game seemed to have good, common-sense decisions. It worked okay here."

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