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5 most peculiar laws of cricket

5 most peculiar laws of cricket

Cricket has got his own constitution and has a vast number of laws. Many sacred injunctions do not always make sense so let's have a look at some rather interesting laws that often invite a lot of debate and controversy.

You must appeal to get batsman out

No matter how plumb the LBW looks, an umpire won't bother raising the dreaded finger if the bowler isn't interested in appealing. According to rule 31 of MCC laws of cricket, an umpire may not give a batsman out if the fielding team doesn't make an outcry. As a bowler, if you think you got your man caught behind or leg before, then make sure to make some noise and let the umpire know that you are in this contest and wickets mean a lot to you. The go-to phrase to appeal is "How's that?" but raising your arms, looking at the umpire and making noise or screaming other versions of the "How's that?" are acceptable as well.

England captain Andrew Strauss, who scored a blistering 158 in ICC World Cup 2011 against India, should have been declared out on 13 had MS Dhoni and the other fielders made an appeal for a caught behind. He was given another reprieve in 32nd over while batting on 111 as Strauss probably edged one through to the keeper but once again there was no reaction from Zaheer Khan and his teammates and the England skipper continued on his merry way. In the end, the match was tied.  

Mankading Law

If a batsman leaves his crease at the non-striker's end before the ball is released then the bowler is well within their rights to run out the batter by dislodging the bails. This is somehow considered against the spirit of the game but the logic behind this rule is to prevent the batsman from taking undue advantage and go too far down the pitch without having any fear of being run-out. In a match during Indian Premier League (IPL) 2019 season, India's leading off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin removed the bails before floating the ball in the air and on that occasion, Jos Buttler had to go back in the hut. Ashwin came under the firing line after the mankading incident but he defended that he played within the rules of the game.

ALSO READ: Comment: Why is it okay to 'Mankad'?

What happens when the ball hits spider cam?

If the batsman goes for a proper thwack and the ball hits the spider cam, then it's considered as a dead ball and even though if a ball was destined to sail over the ropes, the batsman loses out on that scoring opportunity and the bowler reloads that delivery. In 2012 during Champions League T20 during a match between Mumbai Indians and Sydney Sixers, Dinesh Karthik went for the aerial route but found spider cam as an obstacle and the ball was rebowled. On January 23rd at the SCG during the fifth ODI between India and Australia, Virat Kohli smacked a John Hastings loosener that thudded on the spider cam and deflected towards the boundary but there were no runs awarded and Virat's effort went in vain.

Obstructing the field

The batsman, if standing outside his crease, isn't allowed to intentionally stop the ball with their hand, bat or their body by obstructing the path of the ball which might be going towards the direction of stumps. Inzamam-ul-Haq was adjudicated out in this manner once. 

The Law 37 of the rulebook states: "The striker is out Obstructing the field if, except in the circumstances of 37.2, in the act of receiving a ball delivered by the bowler, he/she wilfully strikes the ball with a hand not holding the bat. This will apply whether it is the first strike or a second or subsequent strike. The act of receiving the ball shall extend both to playing at the ball and to striking the ball more than once in defence of his/her wicket."

In a match between Pakistan and India during Hutch Cup 2006, Inzamam-ul-Haq tapped the ball to mid-off and Suresh Raina pinged a sharp throw back at Inzamam who was out of his crease and he blocked the ball with his bat. Simon Taufel gave him out and Inzamaz had a very perplexed look on his face.

Leg-byes off the helmet

If the ball hits the helmet and ricochets outside the fence behind square then it won't be signalled six-byes but instead given as four-byes. Therefore, the ball needs to be hit from the bat in order to get a maximum and if it comes off any other part of the body and sails over the rope, a batsman won't get more than four runs.

Here's what the 19.7.1 law states: A Boundary 6 will be scored if and only if the ball has been struck by the bat and is first grounded beyond the boundary without having been in contact with the ground within the field of play.  This shall apply even if the ball has previously touched a fielder.

19.7.2 A Boundary 4 will be scored when a ball that is grounded beyond the boundary
- whether struck by the bat or not, was first grounded within the boundary, or
- has not been struck by the bat.

Australia legendary batsman Steve Waugh wanted leg byes to be totally scrapped from the game and said: "I don't think you should get runs when you miss the ball."