Steve Smith has not done much wrong in the ongoing Ashes series. However, there was one moment on Day 2 of the 5th Test when he was fooled by England wicket-keeper Jonny Bairstow.
Smith, who was running to make his ground once thought he was going to be run out on 26 as he admitted to the fact after the end of the day’s play. “He got me there, didn’t he? Dirtied my clothes. He didn’t say anything, I don’t think, but he got me. I didn’t know where the ball was. Bloody thing. Faked it. He got me. I don’t know what else to say,” said Smith at the Oval.
Cheeky from Jonny Bairstow 😉pic.twitter.com/icYpYzJ2Yt
— Wisden (@WisdenCricket) September 13, 2019
Most fans seemed to enjoy the moment, but there were some suggestions that five runs should have been added to the Australian total because of what Bairstow did. Australia seamers Jason Gillespie and Andrew Tye were among those who were not amused by Bairstow’s antics.
Is that not fake fielding? #Ashes
— Andrew Tye (@aj191) September 13, 2019
As per ICC guidelines, “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” and five penalty runs are liable to be added to the opposition’s score if a team is found to indulge in “fake fielding”.
Smith added 54 runs more to his score of 26 before being dismissed by Chris Woakes in the evening session. Smith’s knock of 80, his lowest in the ongoing Ashes series, has helped him surpass former Pakistan skipper Inzamam-ul-Haq to become the first batsman to score 10 consecutive fifty-plus scores in Test cricket.