WATCH | Umpire calls dead ball as bowler tries to distract batsman by turning his back

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VIDEO | Umpire calls dead ball as bowler tries to distract batsman by turning his back

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SportsCafe Desk


Every now and then, some bowler comes up with new bowling styles, cue Shivil Kaushik and Paul Adams, but very few have been able to keep that up for long. Uttar Pradesh’s Shiva Singh tried a 360-degree rotation action, but umpire immediately called it no-ball as per the MCC rule-book.

The incident caught everyone's eye when BCCI put up the video on their website calling it Switch bowling and that was later shared by former Indian skipper Bishan Singh Bedi. It was one weird action that one would ever come up with as UP left-arm spinner Shiva Singh, who was also a part of the Under-19 World Cup team turned 360 degrees before delivering a ball to a Bengal batsman in the CK Nayudu Trophy game in Kalyani. However, umpire Vinod Seshan almost instantly called it a dead ball much to the dismay of Shiva and his teammates.

While skipper Shivam Chaudhary and Shiva came forward to ask why that was called as a dead ball, umpire explained them the MCC rule book and added that a repeat offence would result in the same call.

As per the MCC rule 20.4.2 “Either umpire shall call and signal Dead ball when there is an instance of a deliberate attempt to distract under either of Laws 41.4 (Deliberate attempt to distract striker) or 41.5 (Deliberate distraction, deception or obstruction of batsman). The ball shall not count as one of the over.”

Understandably disappointed by the decision, the bowler told ESPNcricinfo that he had bowled with the same style in the Vijay Hazare Trophy match against Kerala last month, and was not pulled up by the umpires. 

"I use different variations in one-dayers and T20s so I thought of doing the same because the Bengal batsmen were developing a partnership. The umpires said dead ball, so I asked "why are you calling it a dead ball?,” the bowler was quoted as saying by Cricinfo. 

“I delivered this 360-degree ball against Kerala in the Vijay Hazare Trophy as well, where it was fine. Batsman always goes for the reverse-sweep or the switch-hit against bowlers. But when bowlers do something like this it's deemed a dead ball."

However, former ICC Elite Panel umpire Simon Taufel found the comparison with the switch wrong and in an interview with Cricketnext, he said that it was a completely different scenario. 

"The intent of the reverse action is different. One is necessary to play the shot, the other is not in order to maintain the same mode of delivery. The umpire is entitled to call and signal dead ball under Law (unfair play) or (deliberate attempt to distract/deceive/obstruct). It's up to the umpire but one would have to ask why the bowler did this and have to assume the only reason would be to distract or put the striker off. Doesn't seem right or fair to me. If it is his normal bowling action then maybe a different outcome."

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