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Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Finn dislodges bail; Cook vents out ire... India wins ODI at Mohali

The Laws of the game are of great importance ~ you might debate endlessly on why they are there ~ but once they are in place, one can do nothing but to abide by them. At Mohali, in the end, it was a comfortable win for India chasing 258; they lost only 5 wickets and Raina completed the victory remaining unbeaten on 89, making his 3rd fifty in as many innings.  Now the chill of Dharamsala, in the foothills of Himalayas may not offer any heat.

One can sympathise with Alastair Cook if he felt that Steven Finn's knee did them in. But the reaction of Cook and his argument with umpire Steve Davis smacked of arrogance or of ignorance of law ~ the latter cannot be true as they have had previous experience of the same law that was  invoked Law 23.  What would have happened, had Raina scored a four of that ball - still it would have been a dead ball.....

Earlier, India persisted with ever failing Rohit Sharma, who came good at last.  Gambhir was did in by a dubious decision.  Kohli and Yuvraj followed, before Dhoni had a good partnership with Raina.  In the morning, Bhuvanesh bowled a tight spell; England had a good 2nd wicket partnership; but their down slide came when Cook got out in the 32nd over.  Cook was trapped by Ashwin who also got rid of Morgan; Jadeja chipped in with  another 3 and  some late hitting by Root took them to 257, which proved not enough in the end. 

After Dhoni got out to an ordinary ball, came the batting powerplay… over no. 36 – India 178/5 needing 80 more… Finn was the bowler, Raina launched into a drive, edged, well taken at first slip by England captain ~ Steve Davis declared a ‘dead ball’ ~ Cook ran towards the Umpire and started arguing furiously… well, rule is a rule and there was nothing Umpire could do about. 

Dead ball is a phenomenon in many ball sports in which the ball is deemed temporarily not playable, and no movement may be made with it or the players from their respective positions of significance.  In Cricket, Law 23 mentions the situation when the ball is dead.

Law 23. 1. Ball is dead
(a) The ball becomes dead when
(i) it is finally settled in the hands of the wicket-keeper or of the bowler.
(ii) a boundary is scored.
(iii) a batsman is dismissed. The ball will be deemed to be dead from the instant of the incident causing the dismissal.
(iv) whether played or not it becomes trapped between the bat and person of a batsman or between items of his clothing or equipment.
(v) whether played or not it lodges in the clothing or equipment of a batsman or the clothing of an umpire.
(vi) it lodges in a protective helmet worn by a fielder……………………
there is more….

This is not the first time such accident occurred on Cricket field and not the first time for England – Finn too…..  In Aug 2012, when England played South Africa, Umpire Steve Davis repeatedly called "dead ball" after Finn had continued a habit, which has previously gone unpunished, of occasionally dislodging the bails with his knee as he delivered the ball.  Smith, edged to Strauss only to be called a dead ball as Finn had dislodged the bails. 

According to  Law 23.4(b) Umpire will call it a dead ball, when the bowler dislodges a bail, or the bails are dislodged by any other reason, before the batsman gets an opportunity to play the ball. The Umpire was perfectly right and the gesture and reaction of English players and their captain was totally unwarranted ~ but such unsporting behaviour from Cook or for that matter English team is not new nor happening for the first time….

With regards – S. Sampathkumar.
23rd Jan 2013.

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