A peculiar incident unfolded on the inaugural day of the second and conclusive Test of the two-match series between Bangladesh and New Zealand that provided an amusing spectacle for the entire cricketing community as Mushfiqur Rahim became the first Bangladesh player to be given out for obstructing the field. Notably, this also marked the 11th instance in Test cricket when a batter was dismissed for ‘handling the ball’.
Mushfiqur Rahim’s unusual ‘handling the ball’ dismissal
The incident unfolded during the 41st over when Kyle Jamieson delivered a back-of-a-length outside-off ball to Mushfiqur, and he defended it with soft hands. However, what followed was an unusual act from the Bangladesh batter as he used his right hand to keep the ball away after the defence despite the ball being far from the off-stump. The incident prompted the New Zealand players to make a quick appeal, and the decision was referred to the TV umpire.
Upon multiple replays, the third umpire concluded that Mushfiqur intentionally handled the ball and declared him out, making him the first Bangladesh player to be dismissed in this manner. The decision raised the eyebrows of a few and added a touch of amusement to the cricketing community.
Here’s the video:
Mushfiqur Rahim was given out for obstructing the field..He was handling the ball during Jamieson’s over pic.twitter.com/ZpWgOIj4KA
— Cricket Mirror (@Cricket_Mirror_) December 6, 2023
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Understanding “handling the ball” law
The “handled the ball” law was incorporated into the Laws of Cricket during a rewrite in 2017. According to this law, a batter can be given out for handling the ball if, while playing a delivery, they intentionally touch the ball with one or both of their hands not holding the bat. This law aims to maintain the integrity of the game and ensure fair play.
Impact of Mushfiqur’s dismissal on Bangladesh
Following Mushfiqur’s departure, Bangladesh faced further setbacks, with the well-set Shahadat Hossain also departing soon after. The team found themselves in a precarious position at 123/6, opening the floodgates for New Zealand to capitalize on the momentum gained from Mushfiqur’s dismissal.