India began their chase on the unusual scoreline of 10/0 after Pakistan were twice docked five penalty runs for their batters running on the pitch in their ICC Women's World T20 2018 clash.
Penalty runs came into play in the second game of the day as well, when Ireland were docked five runs for the same offence against Australia.
The ICC's playing conditions for the tournament calls for a first and final warning from the umpires to the batters for encroaching the protected area of the track, before the team is penalised five runs for the next offence.
Drama here in Guyana with Pakistan penalised not once, but twice for running on the wicket after repeated warnings. As a result, India will start their chase at 10/0.— ICC World Twenty20 (@WorldT20) November 11, 2018
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Pakistan's batters Nida Dar and Bismah Maroof, who both hit half-centuries, were initially warned by the umpires after the 13th over for running on the danger area. On the first ball of the 18th over, Pakistan were penalised for the first time, before being hit with another five-run penalty on the last ball of the innings.
That meant that though Pakistan posted 133/7, their highest total in an ICC Women's World T20 match, India needed only 124 off the bat in their chase in Guyana and eased to a seven-wicket win.
Speaking after their loss, Javeria Khan, the Pakistan captain, said her team had been warned three times. "I had a chat with the umpires and they told me that they warned the player thrice, and after warning three times, they gave the penalty," she said.
"It's unprofessionalism on our part that after being warned, we were still on the danger area. This is an area we should look at, because it has not happened the first time, it's [happened] in the past in the Sri Lanka series as well. We should seriously look into this because these are the things that cost you the game."
Dar added that the umpires had spoken to them. "It was a silly mistake from us. We shouldn't do these things, we should learn from this," said Dar. "Maybe if the 10 runs hadn't been minused from our total, maybe it would have been a good game."
Player of the Match Mithali Raj said India too had been given a warning, but they were careful not to repeat it. "We were told before getting into bat that the 10 runs [would be added]," said Raj. "The Pakistan batters were warned, and so were we, but we didn't get to that point [of a penalty]."
To do it once is criminal, to do it twice is a brain explosion
After the second match of the day, Ireland's Kim Garth echoed Khan's sentiments. "It's something we're going to have to learn from," she said. "Against sides like Australia we absolutely cannot afford a penalty. Rules are rules, we broke them, so we have to learn from it.
"I don't think there's any excuse for it. You run one side of the wicket, the non-striker runs the other, it's pretty simple ... I'm surprised we didn't learn from it, and same from Pakistan. To do it once is criminal, to do it twice is a brain explosion. We should have definitely learnt from it."
Australia's Ellyse Perry, who has been a part of all six ICC Women's World T20s, said the penalty runs were a novel experience for her. "I have never played in a tournament where this has been a key issue, it seems to be in the first couple of matches and that's completely fine, that's within the rules of cricket," she said after Australia's comfortable victory," she said.
Eleven league games of the tournament are being played at Providence Stadium over the course of nine days. "They are paying particular attention to it," Perry said, "I wonder if to a degree that's got to do with the fact that we are playing a lot of games on these wickets, and probably need to be mindful of looking after them."
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