Veteran England pacer Stuart Broad has said that umpire Kumar Dharmasena told him that if zing bails had been used for Ashes 2023, Steve Smith would have been given run out on Day 2 of The Oval Test. He also added that he had no qualms about Smith getting the benefit of the doubt. However, there was a huge moment in the ongoing Ashes 2023 Test on Friday when Smith, who was batting at 42 at the time, took on a throw from substitute George Ealham. Jonny Bairstow, although, dislodged one of the bails with his gloves before the ball was in his hand and dislodged the other one a bit late and by then Smith was in his crease as well.
Opening up on the matter, Stuart Broad said following the second day’s play: “I honestly don’t know the rules. I think there was enough grey area to give that not out. It looked like benefit of the doubt sort of stuff, first angle I saw I thought out, and then the side angle it looked like the bails probably dislodged. Kumar said to me if it was zing bails it would been given out, I don’t really understand the reasoning why.”
However, as per cricketing rules, Law 29.1 states: “The wicket is broken when at least one bail is completely removed from the top of the stumps, or one or more stumps is removed from the ground.”
While sharing his thoughts on the incident, Steve Smith said that when he looked at the replay the second time, he felt that Jonny Bairstow may have knocked the bail before the ball was in his hand as well.
“I saw the initial replay and saw the bail come up, and when I looked at it the second time looked like Jonny might have knocked the bail before the ball had come. Looked pretty close at that stage, if the ball had hit at the initial stage when the bail came then think I was well out of my ground,” Steve Smith shared. “I know now that he’s very quick. The next one we hit out there when it was a similar push for two, I was like, gee, this guy’s tearing around the boundary, he’s coming at pace. Had I known that previously I might have just stayed there for the single.”