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A second incident in the first week of the IPL involving a bowler running out a batsman before delivering the ball was averted.

Mumbai Indians’ Krunal Pandya decided not to break the stumps with Kings XI Punjab’s Mayank Agarwal, the non-striker, out of the crease before the ball was released.

The incident took place in the tenth over of the Kings XI innings. Agarwal was on 19 at the point and would go on to make an explosive 43 off 21 balls to inject momentum into Kings XI’s eventually successful chase. Kings XI were 80 for 1 at that point, and by the time Agarwal departed, the target had come down to 60 runs from 39 balls.

ALSO READ: The spirit of cricket is not a substitute for the laws

As per the IPL playing conditions as well as Law 41.16, Krunal had the right to run Agarwal out. Although there is no rule to warn the batsman, it’s regarded as a convention, Krunal opted to just let Agarwal hop back into the crease.

Moments later the broadcasters zoomed the camera towards Kings XI captain R Ashwin. On Monday, playing in Jaipur against Rajasthan Royals, Ashwin had run Jos Buttler out backing up at the non-striker’s end. His action had generated a massive debate on social media and elsewhere, with several players, past and present, criticising Ashwin for forgetting about the Spirit of Cricket. The MCC, the custodians of the Laws of the game, initially cleared Ashwin of any wrongdoing, but a day later reviewed that call, saying the offspinner had “paused” too long before releasing the ball, something not “within” the spirit of cricket.

When Mumbai bowling coach Shane Bond was asked by commentator Brendon McCullum on air if Krunal’s action was “gamesmanship”, the former said, “Just a subtle dig, mate, at the mankad.”

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