The six runs given to England towards the end of the World Cup final match against New Zealand has triggered a debate with a retired umpire saying that the hosts should only have been given five runs, not six.
England needed 9 runs from the final three balls when a throw from the deep touched a diving Ben Stokes’ bat and raced to the boundary ropes, giving England four more runs when they should have got only two.
It impacted the game to the extent that it stretched to the Super Over and eventually the hosts lifted their maiden World Cup trophy.
Reacting to the incident, New Zealand skipper said, “It was a shame that the ball hit Stokes’ bat, but I just hope it doesn’t happen in moments like that. I don’t wish to nitpick, just hope it never happens in such moments ever again.”
Stokes later apologised to New Zealand for that lucky unintentional touch.
“In the last over when the ball hit the bat and went for four - I apologised to Kane for that.”
He added, “I said to Kane I’ll be apologising for that for the rest of my life.”
Retired Australian umpire Simon Taufel also weighed in, saying the umpires made an “error in judgement” in awarding six runs. He told Fox Sports, “They (England) should have been awarded five runs, not six.”
“The judgment error was the timing of when the fielder threw the ball. The act of the overthrow starts when the fielder releases the ball. That’s the act,” he told The Age and Sydney Morning Herald.
“It becomes an overthrow from the instant of the throw.”
Taufel has, however, also stressed that it would be unfair to suggest the umpiring error cost New Zealand the trophy, the Sydney Morning Herald report added.
Taufel is a member of the MCC Laws subcommittee.
Sri Lanka’s Kumar Dharmasena and South African Marius Erasmus were the on-field umpires for the match on Sunday.
Former Indian umpire K Hariharan told PTI, “Kumar Dharmasena killed the World Cup for New Zealand. It should have been five runs not six.”
The ICC refused to make a comment with a spokesperson simply saying, “The umpires take decisions in the field of play with their interpretations of the rules and we don’t comment on any decisions as a matter of policy.”
This is what the MCC law says:
(With PTI inputs)