During the 2024 Under-19 World Cup match between Zimbabwe and England, the Zimbabwe team generated a new controversy with the use of ‘obstructing the field’. The incident took place on the fourth ball of England’s 17th innings. Zimbabwean bowler Ryan Simbi bowled a delivery that English batsman Hamza Shaikh missed. The ball fell between the legs and remained close to the stumps.
While the Zimbabwe players made a brief appeal for LBW before Zimbabwe goalkeeper Ryan Kamwemba came up to collect the ball. As Kamwemba walked towards the ball, Hamza Shaikh gestured for the goalkeeper to stop as he walked over and collected the ball. Later, Shaikh gave the ball to Kamwemba. When Shaikh collected the ball, Kamwemba looked towards the referee and asked to obstruct the field.
Watch – The strange dismissal of England under-19 batsman Hamza Shaikh
Outside blocking the field at the U-19 World Cup.
– Lawrence Booth (@BoothCricket) February 3, 2024
Hamza Shaikh started looking at his teammate Theo Wylie, who was standing at the other end, and didn’t understand why the goalkeeper appealed. According to the rule book, any batsman can be considered out if he returns the ball to the opposing team after playing without the consent of the fielder or wicketkeeper. The rule reads: “Either batsman is out Obstructing the field if, at any time while the ball is in play and, without the consent of a fielder, he uses the bat or any part of his person to return the ball. to any fielder.”
Hamza Shaikh was sent off according to the laws because he did not wait for the consent of goalkeeper Ryan Kamwemba to return the ball. Shaikh was dismissed for 1 run after facing nine deliveries.
Batting first at Potchefstroom, the England U19 team were able to post a score of 237/7, courtesy of fifties from Theo Wylie and Charlie Alison. Alison played 76 innings off 109 balls, while Wylied ended up scoring 61 runs off 70 balls. Haydon Mustard also contributed 41 runs off 47 balls.
Newman Nyamhuri ended up picking 2 wickets for Zimbabwe U19, while Kohl Eksteen, Anesu Kamuriwo and Matthew Schonken picked up 1 wicket each.
Chasing the target, Zimbabwe were trailed by just 91 runs. None other than Panashe Tavuringa and Ronal Patel managed to reach double digits and exited cheaply. Tazeem Ali finished with a seven-wicket haul and produced a splendid bowling performance. Charlie Barnard and Jaydn Denly picked up 2 and 1 wicket respectively. In the end, England achieved a 146-run victory and placed fourth in Group B of the Super Six.
India, who are currently the defending champions of the tournament, will look to win their sixth title and also continue their dominance. Australia are also one of the clear contenders to win the trophy this year, while Pakistan cannot be relegated either.
The final of the tournament will be played on February 11 at the Sahara Park Willowmoore Cricket Stadium in Benoni.