Steve Smith narrowly escapes run out from England’s substitute… before being caught by

Steve Smith narrowly escapes sensational run out from England’s substitute fielder… before being brilliantly caught by Jonny Bairstow

  • Steve Smith was given a narrow reprieve after it seemed he had been run out
  • Sub George Ealham and Jonny Bairstow combined to stump the former captain
  • But it was not given out, only for the England wicket keeper to dismiss him after

Steve Smith narrowly escaped a sensational run out from England’s substitute fielder, George Ealham, during the second day of the fifth Ashes test match at the Oval. 

It was almost reminiscent of Ricky Ponting’s dismissal at Trent Bridge in the 2005 Ashes series and ironically, the former Australian captain was on Sky Sports’ commentary at the time the incident took place .

The decision, which has sparked much discussion online, saw Smith knock a ball from Chris Woakes down to mid-wicket.

On the television coverage, the ball seems to trickle away out wide, with the 34-year-old and his batting partner, Pat Cummins, attempting to make it back to the crease in time for two runs. 

But appearing from out of the picture of the television coverage came Earlham, who steamed in to throw a rocket of a ball into Jonny Bairstow. 

The England keeper took the catch and swung his hands into the wicket as Smith dived for his crease with the bat. 

The decision went upstairs to the television match official, with Ponting initially saying ‘this could be out’ before asking the question everyone in the stands was thinking ‘had Smith made his crowd.’

It was a very hard decision for the TMO to call, with there being millimetres between Smith’s bat and the crease. 

But it seemed that Bairstow had made contact with the stumps before he caught the ball and under Law 29, the wicket was not removed fairly and subsequently decision was ruled as ‘not out’.

Ponting, meanwhile, who had notably been dismissed by substitute fielder Gary Pratt in a similar incident was on hand to tell Smith that he should have learned from his mistakes. 

‘The lesson is, don’t take on the sub fielder you know nothing about … the bloke’s covered 100 metres in 8.5 seconds,’ Ponting said on Sky Sports. 

Woakes would be back to attack Bairstow again soon after, with the Australian swinging again with his bat towards mid-wicket, but he erroneously caught it wrong and sent the ball up into the air with a poor top edge flying backwards behind his own wicket. 

Bairstow was on hand once again and this time made no mistake, running backwards to take an impressive catch on the run to dismiss Smith for 71 off 123 balls. 

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