Afghanistan were given a run penalty during the 2nd Test against Zimbabwe after one of their fielders deliberately conceded a boundary of the last ball of an over so that Zimbabwe’s No.10 batsman would be on strike in the next over.
The unusual incident happened on Day 3 of the Test on Friday, when Zimbabwe were on 281 for 8 with middle-order batsman Sikandar Raza (79*) holding one end. Along with Raza was Blessing Muzarabani, who Afghanistan wanted to have on strike.
Raza hit a yorker through the cover region. The ball stopped inches short of the boundary ropes. This was when fielder Hashmatullah Shahidi did something unusual. While stopping the ball, he put one of his feet over the boundary rope.
Afghanistan wanted to have a full crack at @BLESSINGMUZARA1 and perhaps that’s why to deny strike to @SRazaB24, Shahidi while fielding had one foot over the boundary. The umpires rightfully decided to give penalty for that deliberate effort by the fielder.
— Satendra Singh, MD (@drsitu) March 12, 2021
On-field umpires Ahmed Shah Pakteen and Aleem Dar convened in the middle after the over and signaled that they had decided Shahidi’s act was intentional. An extra run was awarded to Zimbabwe and Raza was allowed to retain strike for the next over.
According to 19.8 of The Laws of Cricket, ‘If the boundary results from an overthrow or from the willful act of a fielder, the runs scored shall be any runs for penalties awarded to either side and the allowance for the boundary and the runs completed by the batsmen, together with the run in progress if they had already crossed at the instant of the throw or act.’