Daily Mail

Time’s up!

Uproar as Sri Lanka’s Mathews becomes first player to be timed out in internatio­nal cricket

- Lawrence Booth

THE World Cup descended into acrimony as Sri Lanka’s Angelo Mathews became the first player in 146 years of internatio­nal cricket to be given ‘timed out’.

Mathews was about to take strike in the 25th over of his side’s match against Bangladesh in Delhi yesterday when he stepped away to fiddle with the chinstrap of his helmet.

That persuaded Bangladesh captain Shakib Al Hasan to appeal to the umpires on the grounds that Mathews had contravene­d Law 40.1.1, which says the striker has to be ‘ready to receive the ball’ within three minutes of the previous wicket — though that drops to two minutes in the World Cup playing regulation­s.

Marais Erasmus, the experience­d South African official, twice asked Shakib if he wanted to withdraw the appeal. Shakib declined, insisting: ‘I’m serious.’

A furious Mathews stormed off, hurling his helmet and bat by the boundary, and later described the incident as ‘disgracefu­l’ and accused Bangladesh of ‘stooping down to that level’.

‘It was an equipment malfunctio­n and I don’t know where the common sense went,’ said Mathews. ‘It’s obviously disgracefu­l from Shakib and Bangladesh, if they want to play cricket like that and stoop down to that level there’s obviously something wrong drasticall­y.

‘The umpires also said to our coaches they didn’t see my helmet breaking. It’s just pure common sense, I’m not talking about mankading or obstructin­g the field here, it’s just pure common sense and bringing the game into disrepute. We are all ambassador­s of this beautiful game. It’s absolutely disgracefu­l.’

But Shakib — who was named player of the match after taking two wickets and scoring 82 as Bangladesh won by three wickets — said: ‘One of our fielders came to me and said if you appeal now he will be out.

‘It’s in the laws. I don’t know if it’s right or wrong. I feel like I was at war: I had to take a decision to make sure my team wins. If it’s in the rules, I have to take those chances.’

Up in the commentary box, the former Pakistan fast bowler Waqar Younis said the dismissal was ‘against the spirit of the game’.

Dale Steyn, the former South African quick, tweeted: ‘Well, that wasn’t cool.’ Australian Test opener Usman Khawaja called it ‘ridiculous’.

But reserve umpire Adrian Holdstock said: ‘The batter wasn’t ready within those two minutes even before the strap became an issue. You need to make sure all your equipment is in place. You have to be ready to receive the ball in two minutes, not just take your guard.’

The dismissal is so rare that only six instances have taken place in all first- class cricket, including Andrew Jordaan, who couldn’t get to Eastern Province’s game against Transvaal because the roads were flooded, and Tripura’s Hemulal Yadav, who was busy chatting to his coach on the boundary during an Indian domestic match.

Mathews almost got instant revenge during an ill-tempered Bangladesh chase of 280, having Shakib dropped on seven at short cover. When he eventually had him caught off the leading edge, Mathews tapped an imaginary wristwatch.

Bangladesh went on to pick up only their second win of the tournament, reaching their victory target in the ill-tempered clash with three wickets in hand.

The bad blood spilled over as the Sri Lankans refused to shake hands with their opponents, while their captain Kusal Mendis said he was ‘disappoint­ed’ by the umpires’ lack of ‘common sense’.

 ?? AP ?? Not on my watch: Mathews (centre) remonstrat­es with the umpires after he was timed out
AP Not on my watch: Mathews (centre) remonstrat­es with the umpires after he was timed out
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