London: Batsmen should stay inside the crease and not back up too early to avoid being 'Mankaded', felt the World Cricket Committee while refusing to change the law which allows for running out the non-striker.
The Marylebone Cricket Club's (MCC) World Cricket Committee concluded its two-day meeting with the panel stating that it was "unequivocal in its belief" that the law does not require any changes.
The World Cricket Committee is headed by former England captain Mike Brearley and includes Steve Waugh, Rahul Dravid, Andrew Strauss and Shaun Pollock. The panel said running the non-striker out was not against the spirit of the game.
"The World Cricket Committee reviewed the Law relating to running out the non-striker, in light of the dismissal of Jos Butler in May's ODI series between England and Sri Lanka. It was unequivocal in its belief that the Law, as written, does not require any alteration," the MCC said in a release.
"The unanimous view of the committee was that if the non-striker is out of his ground earlier than allowed in either the Laws of Cricket or the International Playing Conditions, then he can have no complaints should he be dismissed in this manner.
"Furthermore, the committee believes it was not against the Spirit of Cricket to uphold such an appeal, and urges batsmen to ensure they do not try to gain an unfair advantage by moving out of their crease before the appropriate time," it added.
England captain Alastair Cook had criticised Sri Lankan bowler Sachithra Senanayake for running out Butler at the non-strikers' end at that time. However, former captain Andrew Strauss did not agree with his successor. "This is not a Spirit of Cricket issue. This is just law of the game issue," he told ESPNcricinfo.
"There is a very strong feeling in the committee, and certainly one I share, that the obvious way to counteract any threat of Mankading is to keep yourself in the crease. That is part of the Laws of the game. If you are out of the crease when the bowler delivers the ball you are running the risk of getting out. So it is a genuine dismissal," Strauss said.
Strauss felt batsmen don't really have a case on this issue. "And it is a very easy thing for the batsman to do: you just watch the bowler bowl and once he has delivered you leave the crease. I don't think batsmen can justify being out of the crease in that manner and feel that it is unfair that they are run out," he said.
"There is no obligation on the part of a bowler or a captain to give anyone a warning. It is up to a captain to decide whether he wants to uphold the appeal if the bowler does do it.
"Especially in this day and age of Twenty20 cricket batsmen look to back up as far as they can. This is an opportunity for the fielding side to say don't do that, stay in your crease and if you stay in your crease everything would be fine."