Fakhar Zaman, who played one of the best innings in the history of the 50-over game, fell to a cheeky run out trick initiated by South African wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock on the second one-day international of the three-match series.
Just before getting ‘out’, the Pakistani batsman’s score was 193 and he was on his way to making a double-century when de Kock ‘tricked’ him into getting out. The incident has sparked outrage on social media and the ‘spirit of cricket’ has been summoned in the form of a Twitter debate.
The moment arrived on the first ball of the last over when Zaman, batting on 192, hit the ball to long-off. Aiden Markram, who was stationed there, saw the batsmen going for a second run after a slight stutter and decided to have a go at Zaman’s end.
Quinton appeared to suggest that the ball was going towards the non-striker end which prompted Zaman to slow down. By the time he realised the ball is coming his way, he was too late as Aiden’s throw hit the stumps directly, bringing his innings to an end.
Pakistan eventually fell short of their target of 342 and lost the match by 17 runs. However, it is Zaman’s run out that has sparked a huge Twitter debate, with most netizens calling for Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC)’s Law 41.5.1 to be invoked.
The law reads: “It is unfair for any fielder wilfully to attempt, by word or action, to distract, deceive or obstruct either batsman after the striker has received the ball.”
Check out what other cricketers and experts have to say on the matter:
However, Zaman, after the match, said the fault was his and not de Kock.
“The fault was mine as I was too busy looking out for Haris Rauf at the other end as I felt he’d started off a little late from his crease, so I thought he was in trouble. The rest is up to the match referee, but I don’t think it’s Quinton’s fault,” he said.
“I’m not bothered about missing out on a score of 200. The only thing I am disappointed about is not winning the match. I would have been much happier had I scored less and we won the game,” added the cricketer.
Read more – Why is the Pakistan cricket team so dramatic?
MCC on Monday morning weighed in on the incident through two tweets.
The first tweet stated MCC’s Law 41.5.1 while the second gave MCC’s stance on the incident.
“The Law is clear, with the offence being an ATTEMPT to deceive, rather than the batsman actually being deceived.”
It’s up to the umpires to decide if there was such an attempt. If so, then it’s Not out, 5 Penalty runs + the 2 they ran, and batsmen choose who faces next ball,” MCC said in the Tweet.
Meanwhile, the Twitter also celebrated Zaman’s heroic knock.