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IPL 2019: What is Mankading? Why Buttler's dismissal by Ashwin sparked row

In the KXIP vs RR IPL 2019 match on March 25, Jos Buttler's dismissal came at a very crucial juncture and eventually resulted in Rajasthan Royals' defeat in their own citadel of Jaipur

Anish Kumar 

R Ashwin, mankad, mankading

It has been barely three days since the 12th edition of the (IPL 2019) kicked off in Chennai, and the blockbuster T20 championship has already got embroiled in controversy over Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) captain R Ashwin's unusual dismissal of Rajasthan Royals' Jos Buttler. During the KXIP vs RR match on Monday, when Ashwin 'mankaded' Buttler — dislodged the bails on the non-striker's end of the wicket while cutting short his bowling stance to run out Buttler, who had already stepped out of the crease before the ball was delivered — the Rajasthan Royals opening batsman became the first victim of 'Mankading' in the IPL history. 

The controversial dismissal of Buttler has polarised the cricket world, with some fans and former cricketers labelling Ashwin’s act disgraceful and against the spirit of the game, and others defending it as it is indeed a ligitimate way to dismiss a batsman according to cricket rule books. Also, this is not the first time that has been associated with Ashwin and Buttler. While R Ashwin in 2012 'Mankaded' Sri Lankan batsman Lahiru Thirimanne after warning him — the then captain Virendra Sehwag had decided against seeking Thirimanne's dismissal — Jos Buttler had once been 'Mankaded' by Sri Lanka’s Sachithra Senanayake as well. In the latter case, Sri Lankan captain had decided to seek the dismissal and Buttler had to walk out.

Here’s how Ashwin Mankaded Buttler

Jos Buttler was going strong at 69 off 43 balls while chasing 185 runs. Ashwin Mankaded the Rajasthan Royals opener without giving him any warning in 13th over of the match. According to the laws of the game, the third umpire declared Buttler out. Such a dismissal is considered against the spirit of the game. As expected, Buttler seemed furious and had a heated exchange with Ashwin before leaving the field.

What is Mankading

is a way to run out the non-striker when he is backing up and leaves the popping crease before the ball is bowled.

In 1947, Indian all-rounder had used this method to dismiss Australian batsman Bill Brown twice. He had dismissed Bill once in a warm-up match and then in the 2nd Test of the series. The Australian media criticised Mankad and termed the move 'Mankading'. But Sir Don Bradman supported Vinoo Mankad's move and wrote in his book, "For the life of me, I can't understand why [the press] questioned his sportsmanship. The laws of cricket make it quite clear that the non-striker must keep within his ground until the ball has been delivered. If not, why is the provision there which enables the bowler to run him out? By backing up too far or too early, the non-striker is very obviously gaining an unfair advantage". 

Marylebone Cricket Club's (MCC) stand on law

In 2017, approved that the rule for Mankading — Mankad law — would not change and also re-named it to clarify that it was the batsman’s fault. Law 41.16 — non striker leaving his/her ground early says: “This was previously Law 42.15 and enabled the bowler to run out the non-striker before delivery in the light of much publicity and controversy, this Law has been thoroughly delighted with two changes being made. Extending the point, which the run out of the non-striker can be attempted to the instant at which the bowler would be expected to deliver the ball. This will have the effect of being the non-striker in his/her ground for longer Changing the title of the Law to put the onus on the non-striker to remain in his/her ground. It is often the bowler who is criticised for attempting such run out but is the batsman who is tempting to gain an advantage The message to the non-striker is very clear -- if you do not want to risk being run out, stay within your ground until the bowler has released the ball”.

Indians other than Ashwin who have been involved in Mankading 

In 1992, during India vs South Africa "Friendship Series", Peter Kirsten had made a habit of backing up before the delivery and Kapil Dev warned him twice before finally 'Mankading' him.

Also, in Indian domestic cricket, Railways' spinner Murali Karthik had mankaded Sandipan Das of Bengal during a Ranji Trophy match.

Who said what on the incident:

What said: Kings XI Punjab skipper said he was completely within his rights to execute such a dismissal, which completely turned the match in Kings XI's favour.
"No real argument on that and it was pretty instinctive. I didn't even load and he just left the crease. We ended on the right side of the coin, but I definitely think that those are game-changing moments and batsmen need to be wary of it," Ashwin said after Kings XI beat Rajasthan by 14 runs.

Rajasthan Royals brand ambassador Shane Warne's reaction: Shane Warne wrote on Twitter, "So disappointed in @ashwinravi99 as a Captain & as a person. All captains sign the #IPL wall & agree to play in the spirit of the game. RA had no intention of delivering the ball - so it should have been called a dead ball. Over to u BCCI - this a not a good look for the #IPL."

Chairman Rajeev Shukla calims IPL captains had decided against 'Mankading': Rajeev Shukla has claimed that IPL captains, including Virat Kohli and Mahendra Singh Dhoni, had decided against 'Mankading' during a meeting held before one of the editions of the event.

"If I remember in one of the meetings of captains & match referee where I was also present as chairman it had been decided that if non striking batsman steps out bowler as a courtesy will not run him out @IPL @BCCI," he tweeted.

"Most probably this meeting was in Kolkata on the eve of one of the editions of ipl where Dhoni & Virat both were present @BCCI @IPL," he added without specifying the exact edition before which this decision was made.
Cricket commentator Harsha Bhogle also supported R Ashwin: "Lots of drama on the Buttler run-out. He was livid but the law and the advisory on it is clear. The bowler is within his right to run a player out at the non-striker's end if he is out of his crease," he tweeted

"My final point on this. Ashwin ran Buttler out. It went to the 3rd umpire who is on the ICC Elite panel. He looked at the replays & said the non-striker was out. He is the custodian of the laws & playing conditions. So irrespective of what Ashwin did, it was the umpire's decision," Bhogle added.

Rajastha Royals captain Ajinkya Rahane refused to comment on India teammate Ravichandran Ashwin's 'Mankading' of Jos Buttler in the IPL clash: "We are not supposed to comment on a controversial issue. The match referee will take the call. We will take the decision sportively (sic)," Rahane said at the post match conference.

RR coach Paddy Upton's reaction: Paddy Upton said, "I think R Ashwin's action tonight speak for him and represent him when I looked up to the eyes of his teammates".
"I will leave it up to the IPL fans to decide whether that's the kind of thing they want to see and we will leave it up to the cricket world to judge R Ashwin's actions tonight," he said.
Former Australian cricketer Mitchell johnson who was once a part of Kings XI Punjab, wrote on his twitter handle "My thoughts on the Mankad. Its not cheating, it's not against the spirit as it's in the rules you can do it. Personally I would warn someone if I was to do it but the batsman should also play fair by staying behind the crease. It's a bit like the underarm serve in tennis right??"

Former Australian batsman Dean Jones also came out in support of Ashwin: "Don't blame Ashwin here. As it's allowed in the Laws of the game.. how is it disrespectful or against the spirit of the game if it's allowed within the Laws of game? Blame the administrators for making the Law," he wrote.

England cricketer Eoin Morgan, however, believes Ashwin has set a "terrible" example for the young generation of cricketers.

"I can't believe what I'm seeing!! @IPL Terrible example to set for young kids coming through. In time I think Ashwin will regret that," Morgan, who too has played for Kings XI Punjab in the past, tweeted.

Former England skipper Michael Vaughan said Buttler should have been at least warned: "If @josbuttler had been warned well that's fine ... if he hasn't and it's the first time I think @ashwinravi99 is completely out of order ... watch how often this happens from now on !!!!!!! #IPL," he wrote.

South African pacer Dale Steyn was also critical of R Ashwin. "He ain't winning any spirit of cricket awards is old Ashwin," he tweeted.

First Published: Tue, March 26 2019. 09:15 IST