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Just 15 Days After Ashwin-Buttler Controversial IPL Run Out, Ankit Rajpoot Had Disobeyed Captain’s Advice To Run Batter Out At Non-Striker’s End

Rishikesh Sharma

Just 15 Days After Ashwin-Buttler Controversial IPL Run Out, Ankit Rajpoot Had Disobeyed Captain's Advice To Run Batter Out At Non-Striker's End

Ace Indian spinner Ravichandran Ashwin was in all sorts of headlines post running out England’s Jos Buttler at the non-striker’s end during an Indian Premier League 2019 league match between Rajasthan Royals and Kings XI Punjab (now Punjab Kings) in Jaipur. Just 15 days after the incident, then-Punjab captain Ashwin had wanted for pacer Ankit Rajpoot to do the same.

In another league contest at the Wankhede Stadium, Ashwin wanted Rajpoot to dismiss Mumbai Indians spinner Rahul Chahar. Rajpoot, however, was hesitant in doing so as he categorically refused to follow the captain’s instructions which even resulted in a loss for the visitors. In spite of Ashwin explaining to Rajpoot about him not being asked to do anything wrong, the pacer was scared to dismiss a batter in a legal manner.

Ankit Rajpoot Had Disobeyed R Ashwin’s Advice To Run Batter Out At Non-Striker’s End

Defending a 198-run target primarily because of a century by KL Rahul and a half-century by Chris Gayle, it was another of those very close matches where KXIP’s bowlers couldn’t restrict the opposition’s batters.

With Rajpoot bowling the final over of the match, Ashwin had alerted him about the non-striker’s likeliness of trying to steal a single. Hence, he asked Rajpoot to dismiss Chahar if he takes undue advantage of leaving the crease in the name of taking a stance.

On a show DRS with Ash on his official YouTube channel, Ashwin had revealed that Rapoot was scared of the scrutiny that would come his way after dismissing a batter in such a way. Rajpoot thought that he would be made a villain by the media and the public. It is understandable why a comparatively inexperienced 25-year old Rajpoot playing his fifth IPL season didn’t pay heed to Ashwin’s suggestion.

“The last-wicket pair of Rahul Chahar and Alzarri Joseph were batting. One ball and two runs to win. I went to the bowler Ankit Rajpoot and told him, ‘These batsmen will be charging out to run. Just stop and send them back in if he [non-striker] starts running before you deliver. He was scared and said, ‘No way, I won’t do that’.”

When all’s said and done, one hopes for the taboo surrounding run-out at the non-striker’s end comes to an end very soon. This would allow a bowler such as Rajpoot to not hesitate while taking a legitimate wicket. It is worth mentioning that ICC (International Cricket Council) has made it clear time and again that such a dismissal is well within the rules and that the bowlers should have no shame in attempting it.

R Ashwin Continued To Advocate For Run-Out At Non-Striker’s End

Despite the criticism he has faced over the years, Ashwin has always been firm regarding his opinion. He is absolutely right in saying that when bowlers don’t get any margin of mistake, why should batters be allowed any advantage? In this highly competitive game, one run here or there has it in it to turn the tables easily.

“The batsman are so used to meandering along. Someone asking them to stay inside the crease itself looks like a hindrance to them. This is so wrong asking a bowler not to run batsmen out at the non-striker’s end. Especially, when the game is so competitive, I firmly believe that a bowler shouldn’t be stopped.”

We have seen many debates in the last few years pertaining to the “Spirit of the Game”. This thing is quite bogus as doing something within the laws can never be against anyone’s spirit. When Indian Women’s all-rounder Deepti Sharma successfully attempted a similar dismissal last year, the whole of English media senselessly spoke and wrote against her which was pretty horrific to see.

As the official rule suggests, no one should be giving a warning to a batter before dismissing him/her. When a bowler is never warned before overstepping, why should batters be given any kind of a special treatment? In what was previously called “Mankad”, the ICC clearly mentioned that it is just another type of a run-out. The only way it will be normalized is when more bowlers would affect run-out at the non-striker’s end without thinking twice.

About the author

Rishikesh Sharma

Rishikesh Sharma


An engineering graduate and an ardent sports fan, Rishikesh Sharma is covering cricket for three years now after not making peace with a corporate life and has written more than 5000 articles. While Sourav Ganguly made him fall in love with the sport, Brendon McCullum and Gautam Gambhir enhanced it. Apart from cricket, Rishikesh is a huge fan of Liverpool FC. When not watching sports, you will find him riding around Jaipur.

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