The prestigious Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC), the custodian of the ‘Laws of Cricket,’ has supported the International Cricket Council’s umpires’ (ICC) decision regarding the controversial timed-out dismissal of Angelo Mathews. This comes in response to Mathews’ claim of being wronged through video evidence after his dismissal during the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023 match between Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.
Mathews faced a unique dismissal at the Arun Jaitley Stadium in New Delhi when he was timed out after an appeal by Bangladesh skipper Shakib Al Hasan. Upset by the decision, Mathews criticised the fourth umpire and labelled Shakib’s act as “disgraceful”. The MCC, however, has backed the match umpires for their decision in favour of Bangladesh.
Batter Must Be Ready To Receive The Ball Within Alloted Time: MCC
According to the MCC’s statement on Saturday, the crucial aspect of the Law in this situation is that the incoming batter must “be ready to receive the ball” within two minutes of the dismissal or retirement of the previous batter. The MCC clarified that being on the field or at the wicket is not sufficient to avoid being timed out; the batter must be in position for the bowler to bowl within the allotted time.
“The key part of the Law, on this occasion, is that the batter must ‘be ready to receive the ball’. Being on the field, or even at the wicket, is not enough to avoid being Timed out. The batter must be in position for the bowler to be able to bowl inside the allotted time. The umpires determined that Mathews was not ready to face the ball within that two-minute allowance. He subsequently suffered an issue with his helmet, causing further delay,” the MCC stated.
The MCC ruled that Mathews did not inform the umpires about the helmet change within the two-minute allowance. The statement explained, “Had the umpires been informed of a significant, justifiable, equipment-related delay within the two-minute allowance, they could have treated it as a new type of delay (as they would when, for example, a bat breaks), possibly even calling Time, allowing for a resolution of that delay without the batter being at risk of being Timed out. However, it is important to note that both umpires determined the delay came after the two minutes had elapsed, and that Time had not been called before the appeal.”
“Having taken more than 90 seconds to get to the 30-yard circle, Mathews appeared to notice that he was short on time, jogging the final few yards to the wicket. His helmet malfunction has since been shown to have taken place 1 minute and 54 seconds after the previous wicket had fallen. He had not, at this stage, begun to take guard and was not close to being in a position to receive the ball.”
“When the helmet broke, it appears that Mathews did not consult with the umpires, which a player would be expected to do when seeking new equipment. Rather, he just signalled to the dressing room for a replacement. Had he explained to the umpires what had happened and asked for time to get it sorted out, they might have allowed him to change the helmet, perhaps calling Time and thus removing any possibility of being Timed out,” the MCC further stated.