Cricket

Comedy of fielding errors unfolds in European Division cricket match

Cricket is often referred to as the ‘Gentlemen’s game’ by fans for its fine and refined game mechanisms. Appearances, however, can often be deceptive- hilariously so at times. And for the times when cricket does decide to take a break from its classy and suave dynamics; there’s a whole bunch of comedy for the fans to savour. 

Something similar happened in a recent cricket match featuring the cricket teams of Iceland and Vanuatu. In a desperate bid to affect a run-out, the Finnish wicket-keeper ended up producing a moment of exceptional comedy and confusion. 

Comedy of errors unfolds in European Division cricket match

It all started with Vanuatuan N Patabedi Nidelage trying to score a run off M Asaduzzaman’s bowling. The batsman parried the ball off to the square leg side- a part of the ground the fielding team hadn’t taken care of. So in order to save the run(s), the catcher positioned at the backward point ran halfway through the ground to collect the ball! Meanwhile, the ‘keeper and other fielders on the on-side made no visible attempts at fielding.

But wait it gets better! After the batsmen crossed over for one successful run, Nidelage- now at the non-striker’s end- wanted to steal a quick second. His partner, AH Mohammed, however, didn’t want to chance it and signalled him back with his hands. But an undeterred Nidelage went for the second run anyway- only for the wicketkeeper to successfully collect the ball!

This is where things start to get interesting. Instead of deflecting the ball back to the non-striker’s end, the ‘keeper knocked the stumps off from his end of the crease. However, since the original batsman stationed at the batting side hadn’t left his ground, neither batsmen were technically out. You see, as per the official ruling, for as long as a batsman doesn’t leave their ground, they retain that end to themselves. And since both the Vanuatuan batsmen were parked at the batting end, Finland’s fielders should’ve tried to score a run out at the opposite end.

The fielding team misses two run-out opportunities in a single ball!

It took the Finnish fielders a while to realize their error amidst all the commotion. But even after they did, the wicket-keeper- instead of throwing the ball back to the bowler- went for an ultra-orthodox approach and made a run for the other end himself!

Sadly, though, the batter made his ground back to the non-strikers end safely this time; effectively denying the fielding team two run-out opportunities in the span of a single delivery!

The on-field umpire stood absolutely speechless, before managing to smile wryly about the whole ordeal. Meanwhile, the Finnish wicket-keeper’s teammates were absolutely livid at him for his brain-fade moment. Check out all the comedy that unravelled in this video that Wisden uploaded on their Twitter feed.

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