NEW DELHI: Charlie Dean’s controversial run-out on Saturday prompted heated debate about whether the dismissal was in the spirit of the game but the Marylebone Cricket Club has said the onus is on batters not to leave the crease at the non-striker’s end too soon.

India bowler Deepti Sharma ran out England’s Dean for the final wicket in a one-dayer at Lord’s after the non-facing batter had stepped out of her crease, prompting jeers from the crowd.

The dismissal is legal but classed as ‘Unfair Play’ in the rule book, though that is to change from Oct 1 when it is categorised simply as a run out.

“This was done to clarify this matter and to place an onus on batters to ensure that they do not leave the crease at the non-striker’s end, prior to a bowler releasing the ball,” MCC, the custodians of the game’s laws, said in a statement on Sunday.

“Whilst yesterday was indeed an unusual end to an exciting match, it was properly officiated and should not be considered as anything more.”

India sealed a 16-run win over England, completing a 3-0 series whitewash but tensions are still simmering, with different accounts from each side.

Several English players have criticised the dismissal but Sharma said they had warned Dean before effecting the dismissal named after India’s Vinoo Mankad who did it in a 1947 Test match in Australia.

“That was our plan because she was repeatedly doing it and we had warned them too on several occasions,” the off-spinner said on the team’s arrival in Kolkata on Monday.

“We had also informed the umpires. But still she was right there so there wasn’t much we could do. We did everything according to the rules and guidelines.”

England regular captain Heather Knight, who continues to recover from a hip surgery, contradicted Sharma’s claims though.

“The game is over, Charlie was dismissed legitimately. India were deserved winners of the match and the series. But no warnings were given...” she tweeted on Monday. “But if they’re comfortable with the decision...

India shouldn’t feel the need to justify it by lying about warnings.”

India captain Harmanpreet Singh has praised Sharma for showing match “awareness”.

“I don’t think we have done anything new. It is an ICC rule and you always take those chances,” Kaur said after winning the series. “I will back my player because she has not done anything that is not part of the rule.”

Published in Dawn, September 27th, 2022

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