Can a scorecard error in India vs Pakistan World T20 match cost India dearly?


Virat Kohli and Suresh Raina celebrate mid pitch after last shot of the match

On Friday, Suresh Raina hit the winning runs for India in their opening World T20 fixture against Pakistan as India completed a relatively easy 7-wicket win.

However, in a bizarre scoring incident, that shot can theoretically come back to haunt India.

That flick down the leg side on 3rd ball of the 19th over by Umar Gul went to the boundary, which was even acknowledged on air by commentator Ravi Shastri. The scores were tied prior to that delivery, but only a single run was added to the total officially after that ball. India ended their innings at 131/3, instead of 134/3 which should have been the case after adding the boundary to the total.

This error was pointed out to renowned cricket statistician Mohandas Menon by a twitter user Abhay Kulkarni earlier today. Mr. Menon then explained that since Virat Kohli and Suresh Raina had crossed each other before the ball reached the boundary, it was counted as a single rather than a four.

However, despite having crossed, though Suresh Raina grounded his bat at the non-striker’s end, Virat Kohli, having seen the ball reach the boundary, simply turned back and celebrated with Raina without reaching the striker’s end.

Here’s the conversation on Twitter, which brought this incident to light:

According to the MCC Laws of Cricket, Law 18 (Scoring Runs) states:

1. A run

The score shall be reckoned by runs. A run is scored,

(a) so often as the batsmen, at any time while the ball is in play, have crossed and made good their ground from end to end.

(b) when a boundary is scored. See Law 19 (Boundaries).

Having seen the highlights of the match, it’s clear that Kohli did not reach the other end. The last hit therefore should have been a boundary.

Now, the question arises, what difference can this minute error make at the end of the day? It’s still a win for India after all.

But in the broader scheme of things, when the Net Run Rate can end up deciding which team goes to the knockout stages, an error of counting 3 runs can be crucial!

The Net Run Rate of a team is decided by subtracting the average runs per over scored against that team from the average runs per over scored by it.

At the end of the day, all this may turn out to totally insignificant, but as the cliche goes, this is T20 cricket, and each and every run counts.

Originally published on here
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