Deepti Sharma’s run out of Charlie Dean at the non-striker’s end grabbed headlines.© AFP
Deepti Sharma‘s run out of Charlie Dean at the non-striker’s end, while the England batter was backing up during an ODI on September 25, grabbed the world cricket’s attention. While the ICC has now made it legal to run out batters who back up too far, several former players questioned Deepti’s act and said that it was against the spirit of the game. Now, former India coach Ravi Shastri has spoken in support of Deepti. In an interview with Fox Sports, Shastri said that if the batter is backing up too far then ‘it is cheating’.
“My thoughts are very clear. It’s a law. A batsman has no business to be wandering out of his crease before the ball is bowled. And the law in cricket says that if you are doing that, the bowler is perfectly entitled to take the bails off. I know that the rule of ‘Mankad’ or ‘Mankading’ was there was a long time and a lot of players are still trying to come to terms with that new law, whether they should be taking off the bails but as a coach, I would tell my players ‘Just go out and do it. It’s a law. You’re not cheating, you’re not doing anything that is not part of the game. Batsman should know his business,” he said.
“There is an outrage but it’s because that law did not exist earlier. But my argument is that even if it had existed, I don’t believe this practice when you warn the player the first time and the second time you can do it. It’s like me telling a fielder, ‘You’ve dropped me once. Second time you can catch it’. If it’s a law that says it is cheating. It is cheating because if you’re going out of crease, you are trying to steal an advantage over the opposition and the bowler. So, you jolly well, hold your ground.”
After the run out controversy, Deepti revealed that prior warning was given to the England batter before she was finally run out for backing up.
“It was our plan because she was leaving the crease repeatedly. We have even warned her. So, whatever we did was according to the rules and regulations,” Deepti Sharma said. “We had told the umpires too. But she was still doing it, so we had no other option.”
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