England were mistakenly awarded an extra run during their nail-biting World Cup win over New Zealand at Lord’s, a member of the sport’s chief rules committee told media on Monday.
A freak fielding deflection off Ben Stokes’ bat that raced to the boundary saw the team awarded six runs with three balls to go in the final over on Sunday.
The scores were tied at the end of regular play and the resulting Super Over shootout, with England being awarded their first-ever World Cup due to their superior boundary count.
But former umpire Simon Taufel told Fox Sports Australia that the umpires had made a “clear mistake”, as the batsmen had not yet crossed for their second run when the ball was thrown by the field.
“They should have been awarded five runs, not six,” he said, adding that England’s Adil Rashid should have faced the second-last ball instead of Stokes as a result.
Taufel, a five-time winner of the International Cricket Council’s Umpire of the Year award, now sits on the Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) laws sub-committee, the worldwide custodian of cricket’s rules of play that calls the Lord’s ground its home.
The Australian defended the match umpires, who he said had to make a complicated judgement, and said it would be “unfair” to say the decision altered the outcome of the tournament.
“Unfortunately that sort of thing happens from time to time. It’s a part of the game that we play,” Taufel said. “I don’t wish to nitpick, just hope it never happens in such moments ever again.”