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Mankading in Cricket: Meaning and Origin

“Mankading” is a word that has been trending in the last few days for all the wrong reasons, despite the ICC saying that it is a legal dismissal. However, it remains in the grey area according to a lot of experts and some would even go as far as saying it is a shameful mode of dismissal.

To put it in simple terms, Mankading refers to the act of dismissing a non striker batter before a ball is bowled by running him out. This dismissal comes into the picture when the non-striker is taking an illegitimate start before the ball is bowled. If the bowler finds the batter out of his crease before his/her delivery, the batter can be dismissed by dislodging the bails.

The whole Mankading row has been in the news once again after Indian all-rounder Deepti Sharma dismissed English batter Charlotte Dean during the third T20I between India and England at the Lord’s. This run out the final wicket of the game, helping the Indian team finish with a 16-run win. It was also the first Mankading incident reported in Women’s ODI cricket.

Commentator Nasser Hussain was visibly frustrated by Deepti Sharma’s act and said it was against the spirit of the game. But according to the Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC), this run out does not violate the rules of the game. The law states that the non striker should not leave the popping crease until the ball is delivered.

Indian spinner Ravichandran Ashwin was in the news in recent years for dismissing Jos Buttler in this manner in a game between Kings XI Punjab (currently Punjab Kings) and Rajasthan Royals. Ashwin received support from the Indian audience, but it left cricketers polarized.

Mankading: Meaning and why is it called so in cricket

Vinoo Mankad, former Indian all-rounder, was the first to inflict this dismissal in international cricket. This happened during a Test match between India and Australia in 1947/48 and since then, this mode of dismissal has been called Mankading by media and fans, although the International Cricket Council (ICC) or MCC do not use that word officially.

Mankading: Famous instances in cricket

Vinoo Mankad was the first cricketer to dismiss a cricketer at non striker’s end, dismissing Bill Brown of Australia. Although many such incidents were recorded in first class cricket, it happened for the first time in Test cricket during this game.

Many years later, West Indies speedster Charlie Griffith was under heavy scrutiny for inflicting this dismissal upon Ian Redpath during a Test match against Australia. Although such an incident was not uncommon by then, Griffith was heavily condoned for it.

Kapil Dev was the second Indian bowler to have done this. He dismissed Peter Kirsten in an ODI during India’s tour of South Africa in 1992. Kirsten was well out of his crease at the non striker’s end, which led to the fast bowling dislodging the stumps before delivering the ball.

Interestingly, Jos Buttler’s first penalty for backing up too much at non striker’s end was not at the hands of Ravichandran Ashwin. He got run out by Sachithra Senanayake in 2014 at Edgbaston, who felt the English batter was taking unfair advantage.

However, the most talked about incident perhaps in Mankading history came in IPL 2019 when Ravichandran Ashwin clipped the stumps at the non striker’s end when Buttler moved ahead a little early. Many cricketers blasted Ashwin for not upholding the spirit of the game, but the run out stood.

Mankading: Debate surrounding this controversial rule

When the Ashwin incident happened in 2019, former England skipper Eoin Morgan said that the incident will set a bad example for kids and Ashwin will regret it in the future. On the contrary, former Australian cricketer Dean Jones said that it made no sense to blame Ashwin as the rule was not made by him.

Many cricketers argue that it is unfair play and when such a run out occurs, it tarnishes the image of the game.

The most recent incident involving Deepti Sharma and Charlotte Dean also garnered a lot of attention. Whilst former English skipper Michael Vaughan, James Anderson, Stuart Broad among others called it unfair play, the likes of Virender Sehwag, Wasim Jaffer, Alex Hales, Tabraiz Shamsi spoke in support of the bowler.

One major argument that pops up during this discussion is the fact that a bowler throwing the ball gets penalized for overstepping the crease by an inch. Hence the batters too should be punished every time when they aren’t staying within their legal permutations.

According to Law 38 in the MCC constitution, “It is unfair for the batters to attempt to steal a run during the bowler’s run-up. Unless the bowler attempts to run out either batter, the umpire shall call and signal Dead ball as soon as the batters cross in such an attempt and inform the other umpire of the reason for this action.”

Plenty of experts have suggested some other alternatives for mankading like a penalty run against the team taking unfair advantage by backing up beyond the crease. But clearly, the debate does not seem close to reaching an end any time soon.


why is it called mankading?

The dismissal got its name from former Indian all rounder Vinoo Mankad, who was the first cricketer to run out a non striker for backing up beyond legal boundaries.

What is the Mankading Deepti incident?

Indian spinner Deepti Sharma inflicted a mankad run out on Charlotte Dean during the third ODI between India and England at the Lord’s in September 2022.

What is the Mankading Ashwin incident?

Jos Buttler got run out at the non striker’s end by Indian spinner Ashwin during IPL 2019, which sparked a huge controversy. However, to this date, the bowler sees it as a fair mode of dismissing a batter as it is within the rules of the game.


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