Adam Zampa’s attempt to run the non-striker out for backing up too much during a Big Bash League match once again sparked controversy over how legitimate the mode of dismissal is. Despite the mode of dismissal – earlier called the ‘Mankad’ – being granted a legal status by the MCC last year, current and former cricketers remain divided over it. But surprisingly, the Zampa-inflicted run out of Tom Rogers was given not out, once again leading to an uproar. A lot has transpired since. Zampa has addressed the incident himself and even the MCC delivered its official verdict on it, but somehow, the debate the act has sparked refuse to be extinguished.
“I spoke to Zamps [Zampa] already, and he said if it would have been given out, we would have withdrawn our appeal, anyway. It’s not the right way to play cricket yet. It was more of a warning to the batter not to leave too early because at the end of the innings that’s what generally happens,” Stars coach David Hussey had said.
Now, Brian Lara, one of the greatest batters of all time, has opened up on the incident and feels running out non-strikers leaving the crease too early is fair game. Lara feels that if the bowlers are handed no-balls for overstepping by even a little bit, batters moving out of their crease to levy advantage is plain ‘unfair’.
“You’re telling the bowler that if he goes across the line by a centimeter, right, that’s illegal. But you’re allowed to go down the track three or four yards and take that advantage? I say Adam, run him out, that’s what I think. It’s got to be stamped out of the game, these players need to understand that they’ve got to stay in their crease and I don’t see any great advantage,” Lara said on Fox Cricket.
When India’s Deepti Sharma ran out Charlotte Edwards to win an ODI for India Women against England last year, it created a ripple effect. Many former cricketers jumped in and discussed whether the infamous mode of dismissal should be the way forward. Legitimacy of it aside, whether running out a batter for backing up is within the spirit of the game is what has raised concerns. Some believe there is nothing wrong, others don’t. And then there is also a section that believe at least a warning should be given – like Mitchell Starc did to Theunis de Bruyn during the second Australia vs South Africa Test.