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What are the things considered as obstructing the field in cricket,

as like the match played between KKR and PWI in which Yusuf Pathan was given out obstructing the field as he pushed the ball with his leg for which the team approached the umpire.

The other incident which i know is for PAK vs IND where Inzamam - ul - Haq was given out when he placed his bat in middle of a throw on account of which he was given out.

One more incident (i am not able to remember the match time and opponents) which i have seen in which Rahul Dravid used his leg to stop the ball going on the stump after it hit the bat and he was also not given out - is it was not obstructing the field

But when the same thing happened with David Hussey in CB series in the match IND vs Aus he was not given out.

My question is not "Why he was not given out?" My question is "What are the things considered as obstructing the field?"

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It would be useful to provide details (e.g. links) of the incidents you refer to, as they will be crucial in explaining the outcome in each case. –  Spinner May 18 '13 at 12:48
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+1, Good question and answer. Basically if the batsman is trying to protect his wicket when the ball is bouncing on to the stumps, it is not an out. But if they are trying to obstruct some fielder from trying to get him run out, that is an out. Inzamam and Yusuf was out like that. –  iDev May 18 '13 at 20:24
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That should have been out. It is a controversial decision. –  iDev May 20 '13 at 8:04
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@ACB Controversial, perhaps, but nonetheless probably the correct decision. It can only be out if the umpires consider the action wilful, and this appeared to be in self-defence, so "not out" was the correct call. See my edit below. –  Spinner May 20 '13 at 11:38
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@Spinner, That could be the reason. But from the video I felt he could have just avoided the throw. Anyways good answer. That is why I had +1 your answer. –  iDev May 20 '13 at 18:51

3 Answers 3

up vote 3 down vote accepted

Law 37 (Obstructing the field) does not give an exhaustive list of every reason a batsman might be given out in this fashion, and with good reason, as it would not be possible to specify all possibilities. It is up to the umpires "to decide whether any obstruction or distraction is wilful or not" (Law 37.2).

Law 37 does, however, give some further information about some specific instances where the batsman may be dismissed under this law: section 3 deals with "obstructing a ball from being caught", and section 4 with "returning the ball to a fielder".

If the Dravid incident you mention simply involved the batsman protecting his wicket before a fielder touched the ball, there is no problem here as the batsman is explicitly permitted to do so under Law 34 (Hit the ball twice), provided it is "for the sole purpose of guarding his wicket", and, as stated, a fielder has not yet touched the ball.

As for the David Hussey incident: to be given out obstructing the field, the umpires must be convinced that the obstruction was wilful. In this case the umpires considered that his action did not constitute wilful obstruction but rather self-defence, since the ball would otherwise have hit his body, and therefore correctly gave him "not out". (See page 5 of the ECB ACO Summer 2012 Newsletter for the official MCC explanation.)

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Thanks for the answer... –  NetStarter May 20 '13 at 5:54

The only time I've seen this rule being used to give a batsman out in international cricket was in the recent SA vs PAK, when Mohammed Hafeez was given out "obstructing the field". I think this was the first and only ever instance in international cricket.

What are the things considered as obstructing the field?

His offence was that he altered the direction of his running between wickets, to block the incoming throw, when he saw that it was coming to his end.

You can watch the video here.

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Till now 4 players were out like this. First one was Ramiz Raja, followed by Mohinder Amarnath, Inzamam-ul-Haq and Mohammad Hafeez. So the above information is not completely correct. Hafeez was the last instance of this dismissal in international cricket. –  iDev May 21 '13 at 19:17
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It actually has happened 5 times: the one omission from that list is Len Hutton in 1951, which remains the only time it has ever occurred in Tests. Full list: stats.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/stats/… –  Spinner May 21 '13 at 20:37
    
Good stats @ACB. and Spinner –  NetStarter May 22 '13 at 6:50
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@Spinner, you are correct. What I mentioned was for ODIs and I didnt count test matches. I missed the fact that international cricket has both formats. Since he mentioned Hafeez dismissal, I was thinking that what he mentioned is for ODIs. –  iDev May 22 '13 at 7:21
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hmm.. a little bit of research led me to this page, and it suggests that there was a general rule earlier, but it was tightened up recently. Anyways, I am pretty sure of hearing this in the commentary that this is a new rule, but I can't trace its origin. –  xylon97 May 22 '13 at 16:22

According to Law 37: “Either Batsman, on appeal, shall be out Obstructing the Field if he willfully obstructs the opposite side by word or action.” On between KKR and PWI, Yusuf Pathan willfully kicked the ball away from Wayne Parnell and after due consultation of the umpires he was given out obstructing the field.

Either Batsman is out "Obstructing the field" If he wilfully obstruct the opposite side; should such wilful obstruction by either Batsman prevent a ball from being caught it is the Striker who is out.

Laws of Cricket 1947 Code and Law 40 - Obstructing the Field

The umpire must decide whether the obstruction was "wilful" or not. The involuntary interception by a batsman while running of a throw in is not in itself an offence.
The correct entry in the score book when a batsman is given out under this Law is "Obstructing the field", and the bowler does not get credit for the wicket. 

Watch Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=soi3VcbW-YU&feature=player_embedded

and Read more From this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Obstructing_the_field

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thanks for the answer your links are helpful.. –  NetStarter May 20 '13 at 5:55

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