This Indian T20 Premier League has thrown up an interesting cricket rule to the fore, thanks to Ravichandran Ashwin. The Rajasthan team’s off-spinner made history when he became the first player to retire from the T20 tournament. Ashwin implemented this rule, which is generally rarely used, to provide a tactical advantage to his team.
Since many of you’ll are hooked on to My11Circle fantasy cricket, testing your skills and tactical acumen of the game, here we will try to offer a glimpse of interesting fantasy cricket rules which may help you strengthen your knowledge of the sport and make you a shrewd competitor.
This is an essential rule to maintain fair play during the game. As the name suggests, the rule is applicable when a fielder tries to deceive the batsman in a physical or verbal manner with regards to where the ball is. If the umpires find the fielding team guilty of fake fielding, then five runs could be given to the batting team.
Australia’s Marnus Labuschagne became the first player to be penalized under the fake fielding law which was introduced in 2017. Playing for Queensland, Labuschagne tried to fake a throw without having the ball in his hand to prevent a run during the domestic 50-over competition in Australia.
The rule also caused outrage when Pakistan’s Fakhar Zaman was controversially run out by South Africa’s wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock during an ODI in April last year.
De Kock signaled to the fielder to throw the ball to the non-striker’s end while Zaman was taking the second run. Even though the ball had been tossed when De Kock indicated, Zaman eased up a bit thinking that he is safe. However, to his surprise, the throw was coming towards him and despite an effort to run fast, he could not touch the crease as De Kock effected a smart run-out. Zaman’s delightful 193-run inning ended agonizingly.
‘How’s that? Umpire’
It is arguably one of the weirdest laws of cricket. Law 31 states that an appeal is absolutely required for the umpire to rule a batsman out despite it being obvious. So, even if the batsman is technically out and if the fielding side refrains from reconsidering, the umpire can’t declare the batsman out. That’s why it is ‘how’s that?’ even in the most obvious decisions.
There have been several instances of this when the fielding team has not appealed despite an edge from the batsman and the umpire has not ruled the batsman out. MS Dhoni twice missed picking an edge from England’s Andrew Strauss on two occasions during his 158-run inning in an ODI. Strauss first nicked when he had scored 11 but neither Dhoni nor the close-in fielders picked the edge. It happened again when he was on 111 runs, but this time too the Indians did not appeal.
Bails or no bails
It is permitted in the laws of cricket that an official match can be played without the bails. Now, this is something that is not heard of nor witnessed. However, it has happened once in an international game when the rule was implemented. Afghanistan and West Indies were playing a match in June 2017 at Gros Islet when heavy winds made it impossible to place the bails. It forced the umpires to continue the match without the bails after consulting players from both camps.
The bails are one of the most critical factors in determining whether a batsman is out, as they have to completely come off to ascertain whether a player can be considered bowled, stumped, run out, or hit wicket. Thankfully, there were no close stumping or run-out calls during that phase.
Did you know that the batsman can be ruled ‘not out’ even if he/she is out of the crease in case of stumping? This can happen if the wicketkeeper catches the ball in front of the stumps and aims it so that the bails come off. It is also deemed a no-ball. This happened when MS Dhoni caught the ball in front of the stumps during an ODI v/s England. Rishabh Pant too has done the same in a T20 International against Bangladesh.