Is Mankad allowed in cricket?

Vinoo Mankad represented India. When India played Australia in the 1947-48 series, Mankad made a nemesis in the form of Bill Brown. In two consecutive matches, Mankad got the wicket of Brown in a unique way. 

When Mankad took his run-up, he saw Brown, who was on the non-striker’s end, beginning to leave his crease. This act of the non-strike batsman is called backing up, in which the batsman tries to leave the crease as early as possible so that it takes him less time to reach the other end. The Laws of Cricket state that the non-strike batsman is not allowed to leave his crease unless and until the bowler has released the ball. 

Mankad was sharp in his observations and within the laws of the game, he stopped his run-up and dislodged the stumps at the non-strike end. He appealed to the umpire and Brown was given out. A similar story repeated in the next match. 

Media reacted to this story vehemently. They termed this act, Mankading. Today, many think Mankading is not in the spirit of the game. Some others feel that a batsman should be warned first if at all he is a contender for Mankading. But as far as the laws are concerned, the batsman needs to be in his crease and Mankading is completely legal. 

The “Spirit of Cricket” which is a preamble to the laws of cricket, lists many instances which are considered against the spirit of the game. The list does not contain any statement on or related to Mankading. 

As of 13th August 2020, there have been 25 instances when a batsman has been Mankaded. 4 times in test cricket, 5 times in ODIs, once in T20s, 14 times in first class cricket and once in T20l leagues. 

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