Explained: Was The Controversial Catch From Michael Neser In BBL Within The Laws Of Cricket?


The game of cricket witnessed a strange incident on Sunday when Australia player Michael Neser pulled off one of the most amazing catches on the boundary rope. It was a Big Bash League match between Sydney Sixers and Brisbane Heat where the incredible scenes unfolded. With the former side needing 26 to win off the remaining 11 balls, Jordan Silk hit a lofted shot towards long-off. Neser, who was stationed there, caught the ball and threw it in air before going over the boundary rope. The ball went out of the boundary but what followed was a completely unusual incident as Neser, who was outside the boundary by then, jumped and threw the ball back in air to keep the ball in play. This time he managed to throw the ball inside the boundary line, and then returned into the playing area to complete the catch.

While the umpire declared Silk out at the moment, the incident sparked controversy with many questioning the legitimacy of the catch.

However, according to the laws of cricket, what Neser did is allowed in the sport. Here is what the laws of MCC, the custodian of the laws of cricket, say:

“19.5.2 A fielder who is not in contact with the ground is considered to be grounded beyond the boundary if his/her final contact with the ground, before his/her first contact with the ball after it has been delivered by the bowler, was not entirely within the boundary.

“33.2.1 A catch will be fair only if, in every case, either the ball, at any time, or any fielder in contact with the ball, is not grounded beyond the boundary before the catch is completed.

“33.2.2 Furthermore, a catch will be fair if… a fielder catches the ball after it has crossed the boundary in the air, provided that the conditions in 33.2.1 are met.”

Should the MCC append the law? Vote here…

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