Former England all-rounder Tim Bresnan has revealed that he and Australian umpire Rod Tucker received death threats for dismissing Sachin Tendulkar in the 90s during the 2011 four-Test series between India and England.
It was the time when Tendulkar was stuck on 99 international centuries for a while but seemed to be heading towards his record 100th ton during the fourth Test at the Oval. With India 0-3 down and Tendulkar enduring a lean patch with just one half-century in the first three Tests, a three-figure mark looked to be on the horizon for the batting great.
But when he was on 91, a delivery from Bresnan clipped Tendulkar on the pads. A huge appeal followed and Tucker raised his fingers, even though the ball seemed to be missing the leg stump. And since the BCCI was not in favour of the DRS (Decision Review System) back then, India and Tendulkar did not have the option to refer the decision.
“He was on 99 international hundreds and there were no referrals in that series because the BCCI didn’t like it,” said Bresnan while speaking on the Yorkshire Cricket: Covers Off podcast.
“It was at The Oval in the last Test of the series. This ball, it was probably missing leg anyway, and umpire (Tucker), Aussie lad, shot him out. He was on 80-odd as well (91), definitely going to get it (his century). We win the series and go to number one in the World.”
And what followed was absolute pandemonium. For months Bresnan and Tucker would be at the receiving end of people’s wrath. They would find letters written to them, objecting to the decision and things had reached such a crescendo that Tucker would eventually seek police protection to feel safe.
“We both got death threats, me and this Umpire, we got death threats for ages after,” Bresnan went on. “I got them on Twitter and he (Tucker) had people writing to him to his home address and stuff, getting proper death threats going, ‘How dare you give him out? It was missing leg.’ I caught up with him a few months later and he was like, ‘Mate, I’ve had to get a security guard and stuff.’ He had police protection around his gaff in Australia.”