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Ravichandran Ashwin said that he would have taken an extra run even if he had seen the ball ricocheting off Rishabh Pant during Delhi Capitals’ (DC) match against Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) in the 2021 Indian Premier League (IPL). Ashwin’s decision to go for the run had irked KKR captain Eoin Morgan and fast bowler Tim Southee.

Ashwin was separated from the pair by KKR wicketkeeper Dinesh Karthik, who later explained that Morgan believes that a batsman should not take an extra run if the ball has ricocheted off him or his partner.

“1. I turned to run the moment I saw the fielder throw and dint know the ball had hit Rishabh. 2. Will I run if I see it!? Of course I will and I am allowed to. 3. Am I a disgrace like Morgan said I was? Of course NOT,” said Ashwin in the first of a series of tweets.

“4. Did I fight? No, I stood up for myself and that’s what my teachers and parents taught me to do and pls teach your children to stand up for themselves. In Morgan or Southee’s world of cricket they can choose and stick to what they believe is right or wrong but do not have the right to take a moral high ground and use words that are derogatory.

“What’s even more surprising is the fact that people are discussing this and also trying to talk about who is the good and bad person here!” he continued.

“To all the ‘Cricket is a gentleman’s game’ fans in the house’: There are millions of cricketers with several thought processes that play this great game to make it their careers, teach them that an extra run taken due to a poor throw aimed to get you out can make your career and an extra yard stolen by the non striker can break your career

“Do not confuse them by telling them that you will be termed a good person if you refuse the run or warn the non striker, because all these people who are terming you good or bad have already made a living or they are doing what it takes to be successful elsewhere.

“Give your heart and soul on the field and play within the rules of the game and shake your hands once the game is over. The above is the only ‘spirit of the game’ I understand.”

New Zealand fast bowler Southee and England captain Morgan have themselves been at opposite ends of extra runs coming off the body of a batsman after a throw. England all-rounder Ben Stokes had inadvertently come in the way of a throw while taking a crucial run during the final over of the 2019 World Cup final against New Zealand. In that case, however, Stokes put up his arms in apology as the ball ran away to the boundary and England went on to win the trophy on the basis of their boundary count at the end of a Super Over.

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