A controversial stumping by Lewis McManus has become the biggest talking point in the County Championship this week during the fixture between Leicestershire and Hampshire.
Hampshire, who had racked up 5/612 in their first innings thanks to a brilliant double-hundred by James Vince and 150 by Liam Dawson, enforced the follow-on after having knocked over Leicestershire for just 202.
In their second innings, Leicestershire had made their way to 1/59 with Hassan Azad and Harry Dearden at the crease.
The incident happened in the 25th over when Liam Dawson beat the outside edge of Hassan Azad’s bat and wicketkeeper Lewis McManus dislodged the bails.
The square-led umpire adjudged Hassan Azad stumped but the only issue was that McManus had the ball in his right hand while he dislodged the ball with his left hand.
— Wisden (@WisdenCricket) April 10, 2021
According to Law 220.127.116.11: “The wicket is put down if a bail is completely removed from the top of the stumps … by a fielder with his/her hand or arm, providing that the ball is held in the hand or hands so used, or in the hand of the arm so used“
The wicket shouldn’t have been awarded but McManus did not attempt notifying the umpires of his error.
Following the incident, cricket fans and experts lambasted McManus for his misdemeanor, accusing him of cheating.
But some fans also pointed out the square-leg official was equally culpable.
This doesn't look great, especially when you are a perceived stronger county who has rattled up 600 against a weaker one with a day and a half to go in the game. https://t.co/AIm3WPEBWG
— Dan Whiting (@TheMiddleStump) April 11, 2021
Leicestershire coach Paul Nixon confirmed that the management has contacted the match-officials about the incident.
“We have expressed our very strong views on this shocking incident to the match referee, and we trust that an extremely strong stance will be taken to keep the integrity of our game,” Paul Nixon told Wisden.com.
However, according to the report, Hampshire has declined to comment until a statement is made by the ECB or match referee.
McManus could potentially cope with a suspension for the incident.
Meanwhile, Leicestershire finished day 03 at 8/279, still trailing by 131 runs.