South Africa batsman Dean Elgar believes that the third Test against India hould have been called off due to the state of the pitch before he was hit on the head, and suggested that the red tape required to reach that decision should be cut to avoid another Phil Hughes-style incident.
When Elgar was hit flush in the grill by a Jasprit Bumrah bouncer late in the day, umpires Ian Gould and Aleem Dar led the players off the field. The remainder of the day’s play was called off while the officials consulted with the two captains, before the ICC later confirmed that the match would resume as usual on the fourth morning.
In the post match press conference, Elgar said: “Last night was unfortunate that we had to go off in that period and it was unfortunate that someone had to get hit on the face for actions to be taken. But those actions are out of the players hands so we had no say in the matter.”
When asked if the match should have been called off before he was hit: “I do think so, yes. On day three the wicket didn’t play great. Faf (du Plessis) mentioned earlier in his presser that batters got hit a lot more than in usual Test matches. I do think if there was a period to call if off it was sooner rather than later. Unfortunately it took an incident of being hit in the head, where we could have had another incident of what happened in Australia. I think there is a bit of red tape that guys need to address and maybe do it sooner.”
Elgar added: “I know that people want to watch Test cricket the whole day, but we’re also human beings. We’re not just machines, we’re not just going to take blows and accept putting our bodies on the line. It was unfortunate that it had to go into that depth, but I do think the game or the situation of the pitch could have been addressed sooner.”