Ricky Bhui and Tilak Varma entered the final session, and it was obvious that North wasn’t going to make it easy on themselves, as eight fielders were waiting for them on the border.
At one point, five overs played by fast bowlers Baltej Singh and Harshit Rana combined to take 49 minutes. Overs 32, 33, and 36 each took 10 minutes, and Rana spent 12 minutes on the 35th. Baltej’s 34th over took seven minutes, as North Zone captain Jayant Yadav changed pitches for almost every ball. When he wasn’t changing pitches, he asked the fielders to change positions from cover to mid-wicket. The fielder was asked to come close and then asked to go back.
Baltej would start the run-up and drop the ball in the middle of the run-up. Later he began to complain about getting wet in the sprint area. At the other end, Rana would drop his sprint mid-run and ask for sawdust. On another occasion, one of North’s field players asked the substitutes to help him clean the cleats on his shoes. But the refs asked them to go back. After that, the two substitute players couldn’t leave the field for ages.
I’ve encountered many games where a team tries to stall for time in the last few overs because it gives them an advantage, which is certainly not wrong on their part. Some will say it’s not in the spirit of the game, but even if I were captain, I would do the same thing, South Zone captain Hanuma Vihari said later.
147251In search of a quick escape, South lost a fecal