Written by Staff Writer
04 Jun, 2014 | 9:43 am
Sri Lanka captain Angelo Mathews has defended the controversial run-out of England’s Jos Buttler during his side’s one-day international win at Edgbaston.
Bowler Sachithra Senanayake twice warned Buttler for straying out of his crease at the non-striker’s end before removing the bails to dismiss him.
“He was taking starts, not only this game but in the last game as well,” said Mathews after the six-wicket win.
“I would stick by it. What we did was completely within the rules.”
Buttler, at the non-striker’s end, was ‘backing up’ – walking down the pitch as Senanayake ran in to bowl in readiness to run.
But Sri Lanka felt Buttler was attempting to gain an unfair advantage, not only at Edgbaston but during his century at Lord’s in the previous ODI.
“We gave him two warnings,” added Mathews. “I don’t know what else you can do to stop him doing that, so we had to go for it.”
Given the stigma in the game about that method of running out a batsman, umpire Michael Gough checked with skipper Mathews that he wished Senanayake’s appeal to be upheld.
And although Sri Lanka adhered to Law 42.15, which states “the bowler is permitted, before entering his delivery stride, to attempt to run out the non-striker”, England captain Alastair Cook said it was a mode of dismissal he would not have been comfortable to benefit from.
“You don’t know until you’re put in that position, but I hope I wouldn’t,” said Cook afterwards. “I thought it was a pretty poor act.
“Yes he had warned him, but it was not as if he was sprinting down the wicket. There’s a way of doing things, in my opinion.”
But former England captain Alec Stewart said Sri Lanka, who sealed a 3-2 series victory with the win in Birmingham, were within their rights to appeal.
“With the laws of the game as they are Sri Lanka are entitled to appeal,” said Stewart on Test Match Special. “We don’t like to see that, but why have that law when it can’t be used?
However, ex-England spinner Phil Tufnell, also a pundit on TMS, said Sri Lanka’s action were “poor”.
“Buttler just dragged out of the popping crease,” he said. “Senanayake came down and then stopped – that could happen at any time.
“Senanayake’s gone through his action – Buttler was out of his crease, but then everybody would be. There will be feeling in that England dressing room that they had some injustice done to them.”
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