Spin wizard Ravichandran Ashwin was heavily criticised for mankeding Jos Buttler during an Indian Premier League (IPL) match between Rajasthan Royals (RR) and Kings XI Punjab (KXIP) in 2019. Even though Ashwin was within his rights to dismiss the Englishman, the decision did not go well with several former cricketers and a section of the followers of the game as they considered it to be unsportsmanlike behaviour. However, Ashwin was not the first Indian cricketer to do so.
Prior to Ashwin – Buttler saga, two other Indian bowlers had also taken the same root in international cricket, with one of them being the 1983 World Cup-winning skipper Kapil Dev.
The incident took place during India’s first tour of South Africa in 1992, also commonly known as the “Friendship Series”. The 1992-93 series between India and South Africa also marked the rainbow nation’s re-entry in international cricket post the Apartheid era.
Bowling first, South Africa bundled out Team India for the paltry total of 147 runs during the second ODI match of the seven-match series at Port Elizabeth. Chasing a meagre 148 runs for a win, South Africa lost their opener Andrew Hudson early in the game. Following Hudson’s departure, Peter Kirsten, the half brother of Gary Kirsten walked on the crease to join his skipper Kepler Wessels.
Kirsten had a horrendous outing in the Test series, before the start of the ODI leg, scoring just 76 runs from four games. However, he had started the one-dayers on a positive note scoring a fifty in the first game and was looking to cash on that performance.
Till Kirsten’s arrival not much had happened in the game as South Africa scored 20 runs in eight overs for the loss of one wicket. On the first ball of the ninth over, Kapil stunned the crowd as well as the on-field umpires by mankeding Kirsten. It was not the first instance when Kirsten had walked outside the crease before the ball was bowled.
And, after seeing him do the same during the second game, Kapil without giving any warning knocked off the bail on the non-striker’s end and then looked at the umpire, appealing for runout.
Following the appeal, Umpire Cyrus Mitchley was forced to send Kirsten packing but was not too happy with the mode of dismissal.
Meanwhile, South Africa won the match by six wickets with 20 balls to spare.