CommBank MyCricket Legends: Bail dilemma

Think you're up to speed with the laws of cricket? A puzzling incident leads a bumper edition of CommBank MyCricket Legends

The bowler bowls, the batsman misses, it hits the stumps and the bail is dislodged. That's out, right?

After some deliberation, umpires in an Under-17 Geraldton Junior Cricket Association match between Towns Cricket Club and Bluff Point/Champan Valley agreed, sending BP/CV batsman Jacobi Unbehaun on his way.

A clear-cut call? Not quite.

That's because although the bail had been momentarily dislodged, it didn't fall off the stumps. Rather, the thick part of the crucial piece of timber had settled in the groove where its end would normally sit.

Image Id: 965D154240B246FC8C3FC9B9FFDCEBBB Image Caption: The bowler Bobby Gibson surveys his handiwork // Towns CC

After some discussion between the league-supplied official umpire Shane Williams and the square-leg umpire at the time, Towns U17 coach Craig Delacy, Unbehaun was given out to hand Towns victory.

But a close inspection of the Marylebone Cricket Club's Laws of Cricket reveals the 13-year-old, who Delacy says was far from distraught at being caught up in the unusual incident, should have survived.

Law 28, which explains when and how the stumps can be considered as 'down', dictates, "the disturbance of a bail, whether temporary or not, shall not constitute its complete removal from the top of the stumps…"

CommBank MyCricket Club Legends: Find out more 

The MCC-produced Tom Smith's Cricket Umpiring and Scoring spells it out in more detail; if both bails remain "on top" of the stumps, or if any part of a displaced bail is above unbroken stumps, the stumps are not deemed to be 'down'.

So in this case, the correct decision was not out as the bail remained atop the stumps, though the umpires can hardly be blamed for being perplexed by one that even the most rusted-on cricket fans would have trouble deciphering.

Elsewhere, one person who had no trouble breaking the stumps last weekend was Diamond Creek medium pacer Robert Pearce, who became the second bowler this season to take all 10 wickets in an innings.

In a Diamond Valley Cricket Association F2 grade game, Pearce opened the bowling after his side had racked up 325 and soon reduced Thomastown to 4-34.

There was some resistance from the middle-order but the 46-year-old returned to complete the full set and skittle Thomastown for 127, with three 'bowleds' in his haul.

He finished with the superb figures of 10-41 from 17 overs. No.9 Ross Morfea was the lone batsman who didn't fall to Pearce.

More CommBank MyCricket Legends: Hill to the rescue

"Every few overs I was taking a wicket and all of a sudden I was looking at taking 10," Pearce told the Diamond Valley Leader.

"When I got to eight I thought I could be a chance because you are right into the tail then.

"When I took that last one, I thought, 'Holy s---, this is unbelievable'."

Image Id: C6D75563384146B192EDF04D55C49A6A Image Caption: Rob Pearce snared 10-41 // Diamond Valley CC

Pearce joins Myponga's Robert McCracken, who took 10-38 in South Australia's Great Southern Cricket Association's C grade competition in December, in this summer's 10-fa club.

Kai Schumann from Yolla Cricket Club in Tasmania nearly joined them on Saturday but had to settle for the third-best figures of the summer, snaring 9-7 in the Burnie Cricket League.

Schumann was denied the 10th wicket by his opening partner Korey Robinson, as the duo combined to roll Natone for 26 in the B grade fixture. Yolla's openers needed just 7.1 overs to wrap up the 10-wicket win.

More CommBank MyCricket Legends: Wicketkeeping record

Also on the Apple Isle over the weekend, University of Tasmania CC were bowled out for 31, their lowest-ever total in their 119-year history early on Saturday morning. 

But that record amazingly only stood for a matter of hours; later that day they were dismissed for just 22 in their second-innings as Clarence, who posted 5-188 amid the carnage, romped to an outright innings win in a day.

Tasmania Sheffield Shield fast-bowling pair Cameron Stevenson (12-22 for the match) and Sam Rainbird (8-28) took all 20 wickets between them.

Image Id: F094039C835E4A96B0AE612396836862 Image Caption: Cameron Stevenson sends one down for Clarence // Allan Minack

In Queensland, Ipswich-Logan CC fielded three sets of brothers in the same team in a first XI match in what could be a first in Premier Cricket.

Twins Rowan and Sean Lutter (who had the chance to bowl in tandem for a period) joined Dan and Anthony Wilson, and Harry and Jack Wood.

Harry Wood, the youngest of all the siblings playing in the match against Northern Suburbs, made an unbeaten 113 to underline his potential. The 18-year-old was selected in the Ricky Ponting XI to play against an Adam Gilchrist XI in December, in a match showcasing the best young players in the country.

Finally, Sydney umpire Arthur Watson will notch an incredible milestone this weekend as he officiates his 750th NSW Premier Cricket match.

Watson, who umpired three one-day internationals in 1979-80, will reach the mark this Saturday in a second grade match between Fairfield-Liverpoool and Sydney University. 


Two outstanding bowling performances lead this week's Top Five, as well as a familiar name to KFC Big Bash League fans starring with the ball instead of the bat!

1. Cam Stevenson 6-13 & 6-9 - Clarence TAS 

2. Ian Holland 8-15 & 2-25 - Ringwood VIC 

3. Robert Jones 140 not out - South Perth WA 

4. Chris Sabburg 135 - Western Suburbs DCC QLD 

5. Craig Simmons 6-62 - Rockingham-Mandurah WA 


1. Delissa Kimmince 169 not out - Gold Coast District CC QLD 

2. Hannah Trollip 104 - Gordon's Women's NSW

3. Sarah Lowe 5-6 - Kensington SA 

4. Hannah Short 5-8 - North Hobart TAS  

5. Lauren Ebsary 4-4 - West Torrens SA

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