Spin legend Shane Warne led criticism of India’s Ravichandran Ashwin on Tuesday after a controversial run-out which put cricket’s unloved ‘Mankad’ dismissal in the spotlight.
Warne was among a number of leading figures to fault the Kings XI Punjab captain who, coming into bowl in the Indian Premier League, checked his run as Rajasthan Royals batsman Jos Buttler left his crease, and whipped off his bails.
The rarely used dismissal is within the laws of the game but critics say it is unsportsmanlike and not in the spirit of the deeply traditional sport.
Warne, a member of the MCC World Cricket Committee, called for India’s cricket board the BCCI to take action against Ashwin, who was unrepentant about the incident after Punjab’s 14-run win.
“As captain of your side you set the standard… Why do such a disgraceful and low act like that tonight?” tweeted the Australian.
“You must live with yourself and FYI — it’s too late to say sorry Mr Ashwin. You will be remembered for that low act.”
England limited-overs captain Eoin Morgan tweeted, “I can’t believe what I’m seeing!!” as comments about the incident flooded social media.
“Terrible example to set for young kids coming through. In time I think Ashwin will regret that,” posted Morgan, adding that he was “so disappointed in (Ashwin) as a captain and as a person”.
Buttler, who had scored 69 off 43 deliveries in Jaipur, exchanged heated words with the Indian spinner before trudging off dejectedly.
“No real argument to that,” Ashwin told reporters later. “I didn’t even load and he left the crease. It’s always been my take on it, because it’s my half of the crease.”
It is not the first ‘Mankad’ for England’s Buttler, who was stumped at the non-striker’s end by Sri Lanka’s Sachithra Senanayake in a one-day match in 2014.
The dismissal is named after Indian all-rounder Vinoo Mankad, who twice ran out Bill Brown at the bowler’s end during India’s tour of Australia in 1947.
Replays of Monday’s game suggested Buttler was still in his crease at the moment Ashwin would have been expected to release the ball, and therefore should not have been given out.
Fraser Stewart, laws manager for the MCC which governs the rules of cricket, said it would take super-imposed footage of earlier deliveries to pinpoint when Ashwin would normally have released the ball.
“Irrespective of what Ashwin did, it was the umpire’s decision,” tweeted Indian commentator Harsha Bhogle — who was accused of bias by Warne.
The Australian tweeted: “If (England’s) Ben Stokes did what Ashwin did to (India captain Virat Kohli) it would be ok?”
Stokes, who took two wickets and scored six runs for Royals in Monday’s eventful game, had his say on the issue in a light-hearted post on Twitter.
“Hopefully I’m playing in the World Cup final and if @imVkohli is batting when I’m bowling I would never ever ever ever ever ever…..just clarifying to the mentions I’ve received,” the all-rounder said.