Queensland becomes the first team to be penalised under new ‘fake fielding’ rule

Marnus Labuschagne became the first fielder to be penalised under the new rules.

Marnus Labuschagne
Marnus Labuschagne. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Queensland fielder Marnus Labuschagne became the first fielder to breach the new regulations of ‘fake fielding’. The International Cricket Council (ICC) implemented the changed rules effective from September 28 (Thursday). In the JLT One-Day Cup, the domestic limited overs tournament of Australia, the team Queensland Bulls was penalised by 5 runs as one of their fielders broke the law within 24 hours of its introduction globally.

However, the regulations the competition is played under were finalised some time ago with the latest amendments in mind, having been foreshadowed mid-year. The incident occurred in the 27th over of the match when Param Uppal drove a ball towards mid-off, where Labuschagne dived and missed the ball, but faked a throw that led Uppal to stutter initially and shape to scurry back to his crease.


But he realised later that the ball was on its way to long-off where Matthew Renshaw was fielding and completed the run comfortably. Labuschagne put his hand up straight away to apologise for his action but the new law was fresh in the minds of both the on-field umpires and after a discussion they penalised the fielding side by awarding 5 runs to the opposition team.

What does the law state?

The MCC’s new Law 41.5 states that: “it is unfair for any fielder wilfully to attempt, by word or action, to distract, deceive or obstruct either batsman after the striker has received the ball”. The umpires have the discretion to award five penalty runs if they determine that such deception is willful. It was also mentioned specifically while summarising the law changes by MCC.

It stated, “where a fielder feigns to field the ball and/or feigns to throw a non-existent ball in an attempt to prevent the batsmen running,” and the action of Marnus was regarded as unfair and was a target of this new Law. Though, the player who was targeted by the law was the hero for his team who guided the chase with a magnificent half-century. While chasing 280 posted by CA XI, Labuschagne scored 61 runs and played a crucial role in the victory for his side.

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