Matt Renshaw and Tom Banton came together to pull off an absolutely stunning, albeit controversial catch, in a match between Hobart Hurricanes and Brisbane Heat in Australia’s Big Bash League on Thursday.
The incident happened in the final ball of the 15th over when Matthew Wade smacked one in the air off Ben Cutting’s bowling. Renshaw caught the ball at the boundary, tossed it in the air, went over the rope, then jumped in the air and batted it back inside the rope (with neither of his feet touching the ground at the point of impact) where Banton completed the catch.
This led to utter confusion among the umpires and commentators as to whether it was a legal catch. The third umpire had a long look at it and ruled it not out, before having another look and deciding to change his mind and giving it out.
Here’s the incredible catch:
As it turns out, the rule regarding such a catch was different till some time ago. According to the earlier rule, Wade would have been not out and given six runs.
The Lord’s cricket account tweeted that, “Under Law 19.5, the catch is deemed lawful. The key moment is when he first touches the ball, which is inside the boundary. He’s airborne for his second contact.”
This is what the rule currently states:
19.4 Ball grounded beyond the boundary
19.4.1 The ball in play is grounded beyond the boundary if it touches - the boundary or any part of an object used to mark the boundary; - the ground beyond the boundary; - any object that is grounded beyond the boundary.
19.4.2 The ball in play is to be regarded as being grounded beyond the boundary if - a fielder, grounded beyond the boundary as in clause 19.5, touches the ball; - a fielder, after catching the ball within the boundary, becomes grounded beyond the boundary while in contact with the ball, before completing the catch.
19.5 Fielder grounded beyond the boundary
19.5.1 A fielder is grounded beyond the boundary if some part of his person is in contact with any of the following: - the boundary or any part of an object used to mark the boundary; - the ground beyond the boundary; - any object that is in contact with the ground beyond the boundary; - another fielder who is grounded beyond the boundary.
19.5.2 A fielder who is not in contact with the ground is considered to be grounded beyond the boundary if his final contact with the ground, before his first contact with the ball after it has been delivered by the bowler, was not entirely within the boundary.
It certainly seems to be legal as per rules but do you think that catch should have been allowed to stand or not? Does cricket need another rule change? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section or on our social media.