Cricket opinion: Should a batsman be declared out if the bails just light up and don't get dislodged?

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IPL 2019: RR vs KKR

The last two days in the Indian Premier League (IPL) have witnessed a couple of strange incidents. Twice, the stumps were hit (quite hard actually) either by a fielder or the bowler himself. But the bails didn't fall onto the ground. Consequently, the batsman was declared not out and this has led to quite a debate.

The incidents

In the first of these instances, MS Dhoni flipped the ball back onto the stumps in the game against the Kings XI Punjab when KL Rahul was batting. The wicket-keeper did his job exceptionally well as he didn't even have a sight of the stumps. This happened at a crucial juncture in the match and the batsman was clearly short of his crease. But, the bails lit up and didn't fall onto the ground and thus Rahul survived this close call.

A similar incident took place in the game between Rajasthan Royals and the Kolkata Knight Riders. Dhawal Kulkarni, found the inside edge of Chris Lynn and the ball hit the stumps. The bowler started celebrating but the bails did not fall onto the ground. Thus, Chris Lynn survived this scare and went on to to register a half-century in the match.

What should be done in such a scenario?

According to the rule, if the bails do not fall onto the ground during the dismissal process, it is declared not out. But, it has to be kept in mind that there weren't any LED stumps when this rule was made. Back then, it might have been quite a difficult to determine whether the bails got disconnected from the stumps or not.

Thus, to make things easier, possibly when the law was made, it was declared that the bails had to fall onto the ground. But now, since there is an advanced technology in place, there is no ambiguity whatsoever.

Recently, the rules about the batsmen grounding his bat while running were also changed. If the bat is grounded in the crease once, it will not matter if it gets back in the air again. He will be declared not out.

A batsman is declared stumped out even if he is momentarily out of his crease. Likewise with run-out calls as well. If this can be the case, batsmen can be declared out even when the bails light up at least for a fraction of a second. Technically, the bails have been dislodged from their position and it doesn't really go against the fundamentals of cricket. Only that they do not fall to the ground.

There is more clarity and conciseness now to determine if the balls are dislodged from the bails. Thus, it surely makes sense that the batsman can be given out even if the bails are dislodged momentarily and fall back into their place. This makes a very good case for the MCC to reconsider the laws.

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