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Free-hit rule should be changed following the chaotic finish to India-Pakistan match, says Mark Taylor

Former Australian Cricketer Mark Taylor says the free-hit law should be changed following the chaotic finish to the India-Pakistan T20 World Cup match. 

Taylor urged decision-makers to consider making a change regarding free hits, which would have dramatically changed the outcome of the game in Melbourne from an Indian victory to a Pakistan victory.

India secured a famous victory off the final ball of the 20th over, taking 16 runs off Mohammad Nawaz’s final over.

One of the turning points came with India needing five runs to win off three balls, with Virat Kohli on strike to Nawaz with a free hit, following a waist-high full toss from the Pakistan bowler. Kohli attempted to sweep a full ball but was bowled, with the ball deflecting off the stumps down to the third man.

Taylor believes that keeping your wicket is enough of a gain from a free hit and that if you are removed while going for a huge shot, the ball should be ‘dead’ as soon as that happens.

While talking to the Wide World of Sports, Taylor said: “I think if the ball hits the stumps you’re gaining an unfair advantage,”

“Firstly, in the situation like we saw on Sunday night, the ball can deflect anywhere, and secondly, if the fielding team is trying to run the batter out, the bails are already on the ground, and you’ve got to remove the stump, so that’s harder as well.

“I think if the batter is bowled or caught off the free hit, you’re not out, but the ball should then be dead that would be fair and reasonable.

“You’ve got the advantage of not being out off a free hit, but you shouldn’t benefit a second time from what would normally be considered a dismissal.” He added.

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