Angelo Mathews ‘Timed-out’ | Controversy in ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 | Was Shakib right?

Angelo Mathews ‘Timed-out’ | Controversy in ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 | Was Shakib right?

In what could be termed a controversial turn of events, Sri Lankan middle order Batsman and ex-captain of the Island nation became the first player in international cricket to be ‘Timed Out’ during the ongoing ICC Men’s Cricket 2023 World Cup.

Timed Out

The article will discuss this controversy and whether Shakib was right to appeal for ‘Timed Out’.

Presented By: Raghunath Nair


Sri Lanka was playing against Bangladesh in the round-robin stage of the ICC Men’s Cricket 2023 World Cup at the Arun Jaitley Stadium in New Delhi on Monday.

Sri Lanka was on course to register a good First-innings score when Angelo Mathews came into bat after Shakib Al Hasan had dismissed Sadeera Samarawickrama, who made a 42-ball 41.

After reaching the pitch and preparing to take guard to face his first delivery, Angelo Mathews realized that the strap of the batsman’s helmet was broken.

Angelo Mathews immediately called for a replacement and the intermittent time taken for the batsman to get ready after the replacement prompted the Bangladeshi Captain, Shakib Al Hasan to appeal for ‘Timed Out’.

What seemed to pass as a joke initially to the crowd, turned serious when Shakib Al Hasan stood by his appeal even after due prompting from the umpires on whether the Bangladesh captain was “serious” and if he wanted to withdraw his appeal.

Umpires dicussion on shakib Appeal

When the message was passed to the Sri Lankan veteran, he went to the Bangladesh Captain to explain the faulty helmet issue.

Angelo Explaining to shakib

Shakib Al Hasan didn’t budge and there was nothing the umpires could do but give the batsman out for ‘Timed Out’. The Batsman was out without even facing a ball at the striker’s end.

A furious Angelo Mathews had to go back and looked confused and helpless.

Angelo waking back

Timed Out: What does the Law say?

MCC Rule Book

40.1 Out Timed out

40.1.1 After the fall of a wicket or the retirement of a batter, the incoming batter must, unless Time has been called, be ready to receive the ball, or for the other batter to be ready to receive the next ball within 3 minutes of the dismissal or retirement. If this requirement is not met, the incoming batter will be out, Timed out.

40.1.2 In the event of an extended delay in which no batter comes to the wicket, the umpires shall adopt the procedure of Law 16.3 (Umpires awarding a match).  For the purposes of that Law the start of the action shall be taken as the expiry of the 3 minutes referred to above.


40.2 Bowler does not get credit

The bowler does not get credit for the wicket.

MCC Rule states 3 minutes for the incoming batsman unless Time has been called, to be ready to receive the ball or for the other batter to be ready to receive the next ball.

If this requirement is not met, the incoming batsman can be given out as ‘Timed Out’.

ICC rule for the ODI World Cup 2023 Playing Conditions was kept at 2 minutes instead of 3 minutes.

While Angelo Mathews is the first international player to be given out in this manner, Six First class cricketers have been given out ‘Timed Out’ in the past.

While the game itself would have made no difference to the final top 4 position in the points table, it still was an International ICC Game and a World Cup Match.

World Split on the Controversial Decision by Shakib Al Hasan

Experts have started to weigh in to express their take on the call taken by the Bangladesh Captain.

Calls of Spirit of the game started doing the rounds.

Brett Lee felt that Angelo was ready to face the ball within the stipulated two minutes. Malfunction from the equipment should have been considered by the umpire which then could have been then interpreted differently. He felt this was an Umpire’s Fault

Micheal Hussey:  Common Sense should have prevailed.  The appeal should have been withdrawn.

SuperSports360’s view on the whole controversy

To be ‘Timed Out’ is one of the modes of dismissal and one of the laws of the game.

To term it not within the ‘True Spirit of the Game’ takes it too far.

A captain has taken a call within the laws of the game and also considering the penalty of fielding restrictions due to slow overrates.

Super Sports Team feels that the call was well within the captain’s right. Merely being at the crease within 2 minutes is not enough, the batsman should also be ready to play the ball.

Even the umpires agreed that Angelo had crossed 2 minutes to face the first ball. Additional time was taken after the mandatory 2-minute window to get a new replacement brought.

Why did Angelo Mathews, a veteran of the game not know about this rule of the game?

Why did he not take the opposition team captain and umpire in confidence and take permission?

If he was denied permission, the smarter thing to do was to play the first delivery and then ask for a replacement helmet. Shakib, a spinner was the bowler then.

This was a massive mistake by the veteran ex-captain of an international team.

While better sense could have prevailed, the Bangladesh captain was well within his right to appeal.

The Umpires could have interpreted the situation regarding the faulty helmet but once the appeal was not withdrawn the decision of ‘Timed out’ was correct.

‘Timed out’ is a law and unless changed, needs to be followed.


In the heat of the game, calls are made on the field, which sometimes lies in a very grey area and sometimes questions ‘The spirit of the game’. Common sense should prevail in all conditions but it is solely on the interpretation of the on-field umpire who is the final decision maker on the ground.

Cricket is a game to be played within the laws of the game and when calls are made which are not common or popular but well within the stated law, the same needs to be followed.


From the archives:

When a deliberate no ball was bowled to Virender Sehwag by Sri Lanka to rob him of a century.

Readers can judge if this was within the Spirit of the Game

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