India’s Ravichandran Ashwin has branded a cheating in the ICC T20 World Cup match against Pakistan
Released: 10:01 PM EDT, October 23, 2022 | Updated: 10:17 p.m. EDT, Oct. 23, 2022
India could have walked away with a final ball thriller win over Pakistan on Monday, but a field controversy has tarnished what has been dubbed the greatest T20 cricket international of all time.
With India and Pakistan unable to play each other in any form of cricket in their respective countries, this ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022 clash promised plenty of hype – and it delivered.
India’s Ravichandran Ashwin claiming a catch he knew he hadn’t made is a serious offense in cricket. Many non-Indian cricketers have been banned by the ICC for claiming a bump ball under ‘conduct against the spirit of the game’. Will @ICC Ban Ashwin for cheating? ? #NotCricket
– Daniel Alexander (@daniel86cricket) October 23, 2022
Ravichandran Ashwin scored the winning streak after some heroics from Virat Kohli at 82* saved the Indian side from the dead and handed Pakistan a defeat that could spell the end of their World Cup campaign.
While Indian fans toasted the final over Ashwin’s nerves of steel, the veteran caused controversy early in the game by claiming a catch that hit the MCG turf.
Mohammed Shami had bowled a bouncer to Pakistan’s Shan Masood, who attempted a hook in the direction of Ashwin, who set up fine leg.
Fans were quick to lash out at Ashwin for “claiming” the catch when it obviously wasn’t carrying to him
Video footage showed the ball hitting the grass before bouncing into Ashwin’s waiting hands
Ashwin claimed to have taken the catch clean as India began to celebrate as Pakistan had already lost their top two batsmen, namely Mohammed Rizwan and skipper Babar Azam.
However, a decision was made to refer the matter to the third referee for review and the replay showed the ball hit the MCG grass before Ashwin got his fingers under it.
Kohli, you are without a doubt a great player, but please don’t call today’s game a win:
1. Ashwin was clearly trying to cheat.
2. No ball in the last over was clearly wrong to change the outcome.
3. Making three runs after being bowled makes a class player very common https://t.co/Oj0wgbo662
— Gulraiz A. Khan (@GulraizAKhan1) October 23, 2022
Ashwin and cheating, you name a better love story.
— Abdullah (@michaelscottfc) October 23, 2022
Masood survived the appeal, but Ashwin became a heated topic on social media, with many branding the controversial veteran a fraud.
“Surely that scammer Ashwin had enough chances and needs to be suspended?” asked a fan.
“Ashwin is trying to cheat through to a hook that DRS was getting in the way of,” said another.
“Angry India won this and a shame the scammer Ashwin won it for them. Except for Pakistan and compassion for Nawaz,” added another.
“That doesn’t feel right! Ashwin tries to cheat, Nawaz gets an unfair no ball, and then Ashwin comes out only to beat the winning run,’ wrote yet another.
But despite Ashwin’s checkered history, many fans believed he wasn’t wrong on the occasion.
In real time, it was hard to tell if the catch was legitimate or not as Ashwin was diving
However, fans made up their minds quickly and Ashwin’s past didn’t help his cause
Unlike his teammates, Ashwin didn’t celebrate wildly and indicated he wasn’t sure if he got his fingers under the ball or not.
“Unfortunately he has history and I don’t like the way he plays his cricket but it’s very unfair to brand him a cheater because he says so,” one fan wrote.
“I’m not normally a fan of the Indians (although that’s changed a bit in recent years) but calling him a con is a bit harsh,” added another.
“I thought it was out when he first took it. It wasn’t until the footage slowed down and zoomed in that we saw the bump ball. At full speed it probably felt like a catch.
“Calling him a scammer is a step too far in my opinion. At least we have the technology to decide one way or the other (not that the umpires always get it right).’
Recent controversies surrounding Ravi Ashwin
2019: Ashwin embarks on a one-man crusade to make the controversial Mankad socially acceptable. He runs out against non-striker Jos Buttler in the 2019 IPL and warns Australian Aaron Finch he will do the same to him in 2020.
2021: Ran a singles in the IPL after a fielder’s shot bounced off his hitting partner. While it is within the rules of the game, it goes against the spirit of cricket. England skipper Eoin Morgan calls him a ‘disgrace’
2021: Ashwin assumes a diagonal run in the first test between India and New Zealand, thereby obscuring the view of the referee and non-striker. Referee Nitin Menon disapproved of this enforcement and warned Ashwin that he was falling under cricket’s fair play laws, leading to a heated exchange of blows between the two.