India captain Rohit praised for withdrawing ‘Mankad’ run out appeal

India's captain Rohit Sharma congratulates Sri Lanka's captain Dasun Shanaka for his century at the end of the first ODI between India and Sri Lanka at the Assam Cricket Association Stadium in Guwahati on 10 January, 2023AFP

India skipper Rohit Sharma on Tuesday won praise for withdrawing a ‘Mankad’ run-out appeal against Sri Lanka skipper Dasun Shanaka in the opening One-Day International (ODI).

Shanaka was on 98 when pace bowler Mohammed Shami ran out the opposition batsman for backing up at the non-striker’s end in the final over in Guwahati.

“I had no idea he (Shami) did that (run-out) when he went up for an appeal,” Rohit told broadcasters Star Sports after the win.

“We cannot get him out like that. We wanted to get him out, we thought we will get him out, but that was not something we thought off. But again, hats off to him, he played really well.”

Sri Lanka's captain Dasun Shanaka plays a shot during the first ODI

Shanaka went on to get his second ODI century with an unbeaten 108, but India went on to hammer the tourists by 67 runs to lead the three-match series 1-0.

But it was Rohit’s sportsmanship that was lauded by former Sri Lankan cricketers including Sanath Jayasuriya.

“The real winner was the sportsmanship of Rohit Sharma for refusing to take the run out. I doff my cap to you!,” Jayasuriya wrote on Twitter.

Former player Angelo Mathews said, “Not many captains would do this but hats off to @ImRo45 for withdrawing the appeal even though the law says so! Displaying great sportsmanship.”

The rare mode of dismissal was named after Indian all-rounder Vinoo Mankad, who 75 years ago ran out Bill Brown twice in that fashion on a tour of Australia in 1948.

The dismissal ignites debate every time it happens, but was ruled legitimate by the International Cricket Council last year.

Recently Adam Zampa was denied a Mankad run-out in Australia’s Twenty20 Big Bash League after TV umpire ruled that his arm had passed its highest point where he would reasonably be expected to release the ball.

Vinoo’s grandson Harsh Mankad weighed in the debate and said he had no problems with the term “Mankading”.

“Personally, I’m always delighted to see my grandfather being remembered. I feel it to be a great honour for our name to be associated with a cricketing term,” Harsh was quoted as saying by the Sydney Morning Herald.

“I’d love to see the “Mankad” or “Mankading” stay and keep alive his memories and legacy as a great competitor and sportsman deeply respected and admired by everyone I’ve met and those who knew him and experienced life with him.”