I woke up in time for the first ball of the match so I missed the unusual incident at the toss. Here’s what happened: Dhoni tossed the coin, Sangakkara called something, the coin landed on a head. But the referee didn’t hear Sanga’s call, and ordered a re-toss.

If you see this video, in the later half of the 34th second, you can clearly hear Sanga call tails — or atleast I could.

At 1:09, Sanga calls heads for the re-toss. Even if you couldn’t hear the first call clearly, compare the sound made at 1:09 with the one made at 0:34. They’re different. He called tails for the first toss and heads for the re-toss.

The toss is vital in the sub-continent and for sub-continent teams. It is different from a batsman walking when he knows he is out: There is a designated person, the umpire, to make decisions in those cases. It is fine to stay put. The toss is different.

I don’t think Sangakkara is an unethical cricketer — he is one of the better folks. In this instance, I sympathize with him. He was shaken when the confusion was happening — it is that moment of conflict when you are unsure if you should be honest or be dishonest because something large, something you really want, is at stake. I think Sanga will come clean after the match.

Still, as I watch the match, I’m hoping poetic justice will prevail.


If you want further proof: Imagine yourself in Sanga’s position. You called incorrectly, lost, and sailed through the dishonesty in a moment of confusion. You now have to call again. What would you call? Would your call be the same as the first time, or the opposite?