EXPLAINED: Was MS Dhoni At Fault For Wasting Time To Let Matheesha Pathirana Bowl During Qualifier 1 vs GT | Cricket News

From the time Chennai Super Kings (CSK) beat Gujarat Titans (GT) in IPL 2023 Qualifier 1 on Tuesday, fans are divided over MS Dhoni’s tactics of delaying the resumption of the game to let his death over specialist bowl a crucial over in the tense chase. One still does not know whether it was a tactic from Dhoni or not. The social media however sees it that way. While one section of fans and experts called it a tactic, praising Dhoni’s genius to ensure his team went past the finish line. On the other hand, critics are slamming him for using unjust methods to win games.

Also Read | MS Dhoni’s CSK Probable Playing 11 For IPL 2023 Final

What’s the matter really?

Needing 71 runs to win off the last 30 balls, Dhoni called Pathirana, who was out of the field for some time, to bowl the 16th over of the innings. Pathirana had left the field some time after bowling 12th over and it had been little more than four minutes since his return to the ground when Dhoni asked him to bowl the 16th. While going to the run-up, umpire Anil Chaudhary, who was at the non-striker’s end, stopped Pathirana to discuss something. A confused Dhoni walked up to the square leg umpire to understand the matter. Umpires told Dhoni that they cannot allow Pathirana to bowl as he needed to spend four more minutes on the field to do the same. 

IPL playing conditions say that when a player leaves the field because of an injury or any other reason for more than eight minutes, they need to on the field for a similar duration before being allowed to bowl. The commentators also spoke of the same rule on air.

What Dhoni told umpires?

Dhoni argued that he was helpless as he had no other option to bowl the 16th over other than Pathirana. As per ESPNcricinfo, Dhoni told umpires that his other best options – Ravindra Jadeja, Maheesh Theekshana, Deepak Chahar – had completed their quota of overs and he could not afford giving the ball to off-spinner Moeen Ali against two right-handers of GT in the middle. Moeen had not bowled a single over by this point. 

The argument went on and on and eventually the remaining four minutes that was required to be spent on the field by Pathirana were completed. The CSK pacer eventually bowled the 16th over. Chennai won the match by 15 runs. 

Umpires could have penalised CSK

The umpires could have considered penalising CSK, as per the law. While the umpires did not allow CSK to keep five players outside the 30-yard-circle for the 20th over, CSK were not hurt by a financial penalty. As per Law 41.9, umpires can issue a warning to fielding captain if his side is deliberately spotted wasting time. If the same side repeats the offence, umpires can award five runs to the batting side. CSK escaped this penalty as well.

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