Sat. Oct 16th, 2021

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What does the ICC rule say about Quinton de Kock distracting Fakhar Zaman in order to run him out?

2 min read

If in case the umpires feel that the fielder has “caused or attempted to cause such a distraction”, they are empowered to inform both the captains and subsequently award a 5-run penalty to the guilty side.

Records tumbled at Wanderers in the second ODI between Pakistan and South Africa as Fakhar Zaman scripted a rearguard for the ages despite having little to no support from the other end in a whopping chase of 342.

Down and out during the chase against the might of South Africa’s searing pace and nagging lines, Pakistan seemed all but lost at 120/5 in the 25th over.

Although refusing to give up from one end was Zaman, hell-bent to take his side home and seal the series at the earliest occasion.

In one incredible mayhem, he marauded 18 boundaries and 10 sixes during his sensational 155-ball 193, which in all fairness seemed a certain double century on the cards given the mood he was in.

hich led a distracted Zaman to look back before completing the run. The delay of the fraction of a second eventually proved costly to both Zaman and Pakistan, as he failed to make his ground and the bails were dislodged, leading into his undoing 7 runs short of a record double-century.

The pertinent question here arises in the context of Law 41 of the Laws of Cricket 2017 (Marylebone Cricket Club) Code, which discusses “Unfair Play”.

Law 41.5 of the Code i.e. “Deliberate distraction, deception or obstruction of batsmen” elaborates under 41.5.1 that it is “unfair for any fielder to willfully to attempt, by word or action, to distract, deceive or obstruct, either batsman after the striker has received the ball”.

If in case the umpires feel that the fielder has “caused or attempted to cause such a distraction”, they are empowered to inform both the captains and subsequently award a 5-run penalty to the guilty side.

Had that been the case at Wanderers, not only would Zaman been not out but Pakistan would have been awarded 5 runs in their total. Whether or not that would have had any material impact on the result of the game is anybody’s guess, but Quinton de Kock’s action has certainly sparked the hot debate of the spirit of the game again.

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