What happens when a cricket ball hits the stumps but the bails are not dislodged? According to the rules of cricket maintained by the Marylebone Cricket Club since 1778, the batter is not out as long as the bails remain on the pegs.
However, Indian cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar has wondered aloud if that rule should change with a new ‘hitting the stumps’ law for when the bails are not dislodged.
The Master Blaster was reacting to a Twitter video by Cricket Australia’s digital division that shows England all-rounder Ben Stokes’ bails remaining in place despite the ball flicking the stumps and then flying to wicket-keeper Alex Carey off a delivery by Cameron Green during the fourth Ashes Test at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
During the incident in the 31st over, Stokes was given out leg-before wicket by the on-field umpire. However, the England man immediately called for a review, which showed that the ball had deflected off the stumps. Stokes was given not out by the TV umpire, in keeping with the rules.
Stokes couldn’t hold back a chuckle as the incident was replayed on the stadium’s big screen Australian spin great Shane Warne, who was in the commentary box at the time, was shocked that the umpire had raised his finger.
“That‘s one of the most bizarre things I’ve seen given out, for the ball hitting the stumps and the bails didn’t come off…,” Warne said.
“I’m sorry, I’m still in shock. I’m still not sure what we just saw.”
The Little Master tagged Warne in his quote tweet and, in a tongue-in-cheek comment, said the game had to be fair to the bowlers.
India wicketkeeper-batter also trolled the Aussies on Twitter as he shared the video with the comment “When you’re confident about your off stump and your off stump is confident about you…”
Stokes went on to make 66 runs off 91 balls before being dismissed by Nathan Lyon. England finished the third day at 258 for seven.