Ben Stokes after the incident © Getty Images
Ben Stokes after the incident © Getty Images

Controversy loomed over the second One-Day International (ODI) between England and Australia after Ben Stokes was deemed out obstructing the field. The manner of dismissal and the ensuing judgment made by the umpire were contentious and had a polarising opinion among critics and fans alike. Stokes, batting on 10, played the ball straight to bowler Mitchell Starc and was out of his crease while playing the shot. Starc quickly gathered the ball and in a flash hurled it towards the stumps in order to get Stokes run out. SCORECARD: England vs Australia, 2nd ODI at Lord’s

Stokes quickly turned back in order to get his bat back into the crease and in doing so his outstretched left arm was struck by the ball. The matter of debate is whether Stokes was ‘willfully’ outstretching the arm to prevent the ball from hitting the stumps or whether the arm was outstretched merely as a result of reflexive/evasive action. This is arguably the most controversial instance if an ‘obstructing the field’ dismissal, but is one of six such instances in history of ODIs. READ: Ben Stokes dismissed ‘Obstructing the field’

Instance No. Batsman  Country  Opposition  Date
1 Rameez Raja  Pakistan  England Nov 20, 1987
2 Mohinder Amarnath  India  Sri Lanka Oct 22, 1989
3 Inzamam-ul-Haq  Pakistan  India Feb 06, 2006
4 Mohammad Hafeez  Pakistan  South Africa Mar 21, 2013
5 Anwar Ali  Pakistan  South Africa Nov 27, 2013
6 Ben Stokes  England  Australia Sep 05, 2015

Pakistanis have dominated the dubious list and were at the receiving end of the very first dismissal of its kind when Rameez Raja was ruled out against England in 1987. Mohinder Amarnath, from India, was the next man guilty of getting out in that fashion against Sri Lanka in 1989. Inzamam ul Haq was the next to get dismissed that way against arch-rivals India in 2006. Mohammad Hafeez and Anwar Ali were the next Pakistani’s victim to ‘obstructing the field’ in ODIs against South Africa within a span of eight months. Finally, Stokes got out that way.