If the 2019 moment of the tournament was R. Ashwin ‘mankading’ Jos Buttler while playing for Kings XI Punjab, 2020’s was Ashwin, now with Delhi Capitals, not doing the same to Royal Challengers Bangalore’s Aaron Finch. Finch had backed up so far that Ashwin described the Aussie’s movement, seen through his peripheral vision, akin to a “derailed bogey of a train.” But still, he let Finch off the hook, despite his steadfast belief that the mode of dismissal wasn’t against the ‘Spirit of the Game.’
Tweeting after the match, Ashwin said: “Let’s make it clear !! First and final warning for 2020. I am making it official and don’t blame me later on. @RickyPonting #runout #nonstriker @AaronFinch5 and I are good buddies btw #IPL2020”.
On his YouTube channel, he elaborated further: “Finch and I played together at KXIP. Finch is a great guy; he is my friend. We spent a lot of time together during our KXIP days. I did the math in my head — it did not work out, so I gave him a final warning,”
However, when it happened, speculation was rife that Ashwin had a change of heart and had deferred to his coach Ricky Ponting’s thinking. The former Australia captain is not a fan of the dismissal.<EP>But later Ashwin said that he had “a refreshing and interesting chat” with Ponting and that both of them were on the same page.
“I met Ponting after the match. He said, ‘Finch ventured out so far out that I wanted to get up and tell you to run him out’. Ponting said that he is speaking to the ICC Committee, asking for a rule which imposes a penalty for batsmen who leave the crease early,” Ashwin stated.
Until the International Cricket Committee acts and the orientation of players’ moral compass is not questioned over what is perfectly legal, the kerfuffle will endure.