Jos Buttler has broken his silence regarding the controversial Mankading dismissal in the Indian Premier League against Kings XI Punjab, calling for clarity in the laws of the game.
The England batsman, playing for Rajasthan Royals in the IPL, was run out for 69 on in the team’s season-opener by Kings XI Punjab skipper Ravichandran Ashwin as he backed up.
The method of dismissal, named after former India player Vinoo Mankad, is legal but is seen by many as going against the game’s values, unless the batsman has been warned first.
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The incident was particularly contentious as Buttler was still in his crease when Ashwin arrived, only for the bowler to pull out of his action and wait for him to step forward before whipping off the bails
“At the time, I was really disappointed with it. I didn’t like the style of it,” Buttler told Britain’s Daily Mirror newspaper.
The hard-hitting batsman was also a victim of the unusual dismissal at the hands of Sri Lanka’s Sachithra Senanayake while playing for England at Edgbaston in 2014. The 28-year-old was dismissed for scores of just five and six in his subsequent two matches but returned to form on Tuesday against Royal Challengers Banglaore, smashing 59 runs off 43 balls.
“What was more disappointing is that suddenly over the next two games I found myself being really conscious of it and it is quite distracting,” Buttler said. “That is why it was nice to get some runs in the win and get back to thinking about batting and not worrying about how I back up at the non-striker’s end.”
“I think if you look at the footage, probably the wrong decision was made because at the time he was expected to release the ball I was in my crease,” he added.
Cricket’s lawmakers, the MCC made a U-turn and have previously said the incident was “not within the spirit of the game”.
“Of course a Mankading has to be in the Laws of the game because a batsman can’t just run halfway down the pitch trying to get a headstart,” Buttler told ESPNcricinfo. “But I do think, the way the law is written, there is a bit of a grey area in that saying ‘when a bowler is expected to release the ball’. That is a bit of a wishy-washy statement.”
Buttler also said he was going to make sure he does not get out in that fashion again.
“After a day or so I was pretty relaxed about it and I’ll make sure it never happens again. It won’t happen again,” he said.