Timed Out CWC 23

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Match 38 ICC Cricket World Cup 2023

I want to start by saying that from the very early years of any cricketer or any aspiring cricketer, everyone has always been taught that the umpires’ decision whether right or wrong is the final decision and should be taken gracefully.

Yesterday, during the world cup the cricket field witnessed an incident that has raised a lot of questions. Questions like the integrity of the game, and the loss of mutual respect between players and match officials take their job extremely lightly.

In match number 38 of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 where Sri Lanka was playing against Bangladesh, Sri Lankan all-rounder Angelo Mathews was given out (timed out) in a manner when opposition Bangladeshi Captain Shakib Al Hasan made an appeal to the umpires that Mathews was not at the crease in time from the dressing room to face the next ball of the over within 20 seconds due to a malfunction in his equipment.

At the time the on-field umpires took the call signalled out and asked Mathews to leave the field. As a result of this incident post-match, both the teams refused to shake hands with each other and the match had an extremely dry end in terms of mutual respect for their opposition and the integrity of the game.

In today’s day and age with technology having the power to reverse a call made by a field umpire, it usually makes decision-making even easier but that does not mean that a match official has lost his value or the power to make decisions even if technology could have its say in revising a decision.

Fourth umpire Adrian Holdstock was asked between innings by Ian Bishop and he said ( “At a fall of wicket, an incoming batter has to be in position to receive the next ball within 2 minutes/ 120 seconds and the fourth umpire monitors the 2 minutes and in this instance, the batter was not ready to receive the ball within those two minutes, even before the helmet strap became an issue for him.”).

Shakib Al Hasan made the appeal in this case to on-field umpire Murray Erasmus.

There were some harsh words and statements by Angelo Mathews in the press conference after the game. In one instance calling The Bangladesh team and skipper “disgraceful” and used phrases like “stoop down to that level” to describe the act.

Mathews also spoke down upon the umpires for not taking his equipment malfunction into account. When the media asked Shakib if he had any regrets about appealing his words were “Not At All as it is a valid rule of the game”.

An incident which has caused a lot of controversy in the cricketing circuit and has heated the rivalry between the two teams to another level and probably beyond the game now.

Players from both teams have been heard saying that they have lost respect for one another. In my opinion, if this appeal by the Bangladesh skipper had not been made, I don’t think a lot would have changed in the aspect of the match.

So it is a mere case of the spirit of cricket, which I think in the scenario that occurred on the field was not in question as the final decision was made by the umpires where they had significant proof that Angelo Mathews was late in reaching the crease.

The MCC rule book 40.1.1 states that : (After the fall of a wicket or the retirement of a batter, the incoming batter must, unless Time has been called, be ready to receive the ball, or for the other batter to be ready to receive the next ball within 2 minutes of the dismissal or retirement. If this requirement is not met, the incoming batter will be out, Timed out)

Credit Source – https://sidhantmalhotra.com/timed-out-cwc-23.html

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