Umpire Kumar Dharmasena has said he would never regret awarding six overthrows to England during the World Cup final against New Zealand. With nine runs needed from the last three balls, England scored six from the third-last ball in a bizarre fashion.
A throw from Martin Guptill accidentally hit the outstretched bat of a diving Ben Stokes, sending the ball to the boundary. Stokes was then awarded six overthrows — four for the resulting boundary and two for taking the double. Those six overthrows helped England tie the game as they finished on 241 too.
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The super overs also ended in a tie as both the teams scored 15. England were then handed the World Cup over New Zealand on the virtue of hitting more number of boundaries. The six overthrows were a major topic of discussion in the wake of the thrilling game. The umpires awarded six as Stokes and Adil Rashid were returning for their second run when the overthrow was made.
However, according to Law 19.8, extra runs are only awarded if the batsmen have crossed when the ball is thrown. It means that England should only have received five runs off the delivery, leaving them with four to win off two balls. More importantly, Adil Rashid would have been on strike rather than the in-form Stokes.
And Kumar Dharmasena has now admitted to the mistake. The former Sri Lanka international also insisted that he does not regret his decision while revealing that ICC even praised him for the decision.
“I agree that there was a judgmental error when I see it on TV replays now. But we did not have the luxury of TV replays at the ground and I will never regret the decision I made. Beside the ICC praised me for the decision I made at that time,” Kumar Dharmasena told the local Sunday Times.
“There were too many things on our plate. We had to watch the batsmen complete the 1st run, ball being fielded, whether the batsmen completed the 2nd run & where the throw would come from. We were all happy that the batsmen had completed the 2nd run because the ball ricocheted off Stokes’ bat at the time of him completing the second run. So we assumed that they had crossed each other at the time of the fielder releasing the ball,” he added.