A Kiwi flooring an Englishman is a sight more befitting of Twickenham than Lord’s, but a sporting gesture soon had order restored at the Home of Cricket.
Cruising in the first-innings on day two of their County Championship clash with Essex, Middlesex briefly appeared to have lost their fifth first-innings wicket to a disastrous mix-up.
After being struck on the pad by New Zealander Neil Wagner, Stevie Eskinazi hesitated over a single with partner John Simpson as the ball rolled on the off-side.
As the bowler hared after the ball and the Middlesex pair committed to the quick single, Wagner unintentionally clattered into Simpson and fell in a heap with the non-striker, leaving both batsmen stranded at the same end.
Aaron Beard completed the run-out by removing the bails at the striker’s end but, in a show of sportsmanship, Essex captain Ryan ten Doeschate withdrew the appeal.
Wagner floors Simpson & Eskinazi is stranded, but Essex withdraw the appeal 👏— County Championship (@CountyChamp) April 22, 2017
What would you have done?! 🤔 pic.twitter.com/f1s26pgb03
While some fans may wonder how it wasn’t given out considering Essex effected the run-out with either batsman far from making their ground, the Laws of Cricket, whose guardians the Marylebone Cricket Club call Lord’s home, do in fact require an ‘appeal’ for umpires to dismiss a batsman.
Subsection 1 of Law 27 (Appeals), says "neither umpire shall give a batsman out, even though he may be out under the Laws, unless appealed to by a fielder".
While Beard’s reaction after removing the bails may well have constituted an appeal, the MCC’s Laws also allow the fielding side’s captain to withdraw a plea after it’s made, which ten Doeschate had done to Middlesex’s relief. Withdrawing an appeal is covered under subsection 8 of Law 27.
It comes after a similar incident, one also involving a Kiwi, occurred earlier this year in the Rebel Women’s Big Bash League.
Playing for the Sydney Sixers’, New Zealand import Sara McGlashan advanced down the SCG wicket and looked to whip a delivery from the Sydney Thunder's Sam Bates to the leg side.
It ricocheted off her pads and Thunder 'keeper Alex Blackwell was quickly onto the ball, with a clever back-hand flick breaking the stumps with the batter short of her ground.
McGlashan was clearly out of her ground when the stumps were broken but in Blackwell’s rush to pick up the ball, the Thunder skipper had inadvertently collided with McGlashan as she attempted to get back to her crease.
Quickly realising she had unfairly impeded her opponent, Blackwell waved to the umpire to indicate there should be no dismissal.
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McGlashan later told Network Ten she was surprised Blackwell hadn't upheld the appeal, and would not have thought she was out of line to have done so.
"I knew I was out," McGlashan said. "She (Blackwell) just said, 'I think I got in the way'.
"I’m not really too sure why she didn't appeal, but oh well."
Thankfully for Blackwell’s side, they didn’t come to rue her decision. The match finished in a tie, as did the ensuing Super Over, but the Thunder prevailed having struck more boundaries than their cross-town rivals.