By Sunil Garodia
First publised on 2023-02-24 14:06:49
To those just looking at the visuals, it seemed a "school girl error" as former England captain Nasser Hussain termed it on live TV. Yes, the incident being referred to is the Harmanpreet Kaur run out in the Women's T20 World Cup semi-final which took the match away from India. As things happened (and as one can see in the lead picture), it seemed Harmanpreet was running a 100 metres race and was keen to breast the finishing tape. Normally, the bat is always in the front when a batter is making a dash for the crease as it gives them headway of at least 5/7feet and in such cases that matters a lot. Also, the batter is expected to slide from a distance with the bat stretched out. That is what is taught to children when they are learning the game. But Harmanpreet's bat was nowhere in the picture and she was seen lunging as if trying to breast an imaginary tape. Perhaps that is what prompted Hussain to make the deprecating comment.
But as Harmanpreet disclosed later, her bat somehow got stuck in the ground in the last stretch for the run. Hence, she was neither able to bring it in front at the right time nor slide. To top it all, she was battling dehydration and illness and was a doubtful starter on the morning of the match. But she played and played wonderfully till the unfortunate run out. No one can question Harmanpreet's commitment, skill or temperament. It was just one of those days when she found her bat stuck and found herself short at a time India needed her the most. As Harmanpreet said later, one can't get unluckier that this and that too in a big game like the semi-final of the World Cup. So whatever Nasser Hussain may say, a player as experienced as Kaur is unlikely to make such school girl errors.