By Saikat Chatterjee
LONDON (Reuters) – Australia opener David Warner became the fifth batsman at the World Cup to get an unexpected reprieve after he dragged a ball on to his stump but the impact failed to dislodge the zing bails in Sunday’s match against India.
The southpaw was on one when he inside-edged a Jasprit Bumrah delivery on to his leg stump but much to his delight the bails did not come off.
South Africa’s Quinton de Kock, Sri Lankan Dimuth Karunaratne, West Indian Chris Gayle and Mohammad Saifuddin of Bangladesh have already enjoyed similar luck at this World Cup but several former players felt it was harsh on the bowlers.
“This can’t keep happening with the bails!!! Hard enough being a bowler nowadays… needs changing,” tweeted former England captain Nasser Hussain.
Former Pakistan speedster Shoaib Akhtar also took to Twitter to express his dismay.
“What’s going on?? In my entire life, I have not seen five instances like this, let alone in the space of 10 days or a tournament,” he wrote.
On the eve of the match against India, Australia captain Aaron Finch said the zing bails, which light up when the ball hits the wicket, appeared to need a bigger impact to be dislodged from their grooves.
“The bails seem to be a lot heavier, so it does take a bit of force,” he said on Saturday, pointing to similar cases during the Indian Premier League (IPL) Twenty20 competition.
“I’ve seen it a handful of times now in IPL and Big Bash where the ball rolls back on to the stumps, where the bails traditionally one of them will pop off.
“I think it’s just one of those things that you are aware of that when you’re on the right side of it, you are aware of it a bit easier than when you’re not.”
(Reporting by Saikat Chatterjee in London; editing by Amlan Chakraborty and Clare Fallon)