Ricky Ponting accused Alex Hales of not acting in the spirit of the game.
Ricky Ponting accused Alex Hales of not acting in the spirit of the game.

Ponting accuses Alex Hales of breaking the rules

SYDNEY Thunder opener Alex Hales has refuted suggestions his back-tracking fielding on the edge of the circle is against the spirit of the game.

The Thunder kept their BBL season alive on Thursday night with a dominant 57-run win over Hobart Hurricanes in their elimination play-off.

But Hales' fielding at mid-on drew the ire of former Australia captain Ricky Ponting in commentary for Channel 7.

Ponting said Englishman Hales had broken the rules and wasn't acting in the spirit of the game by stepping outside the inner circle before the bowler had released the ball.

Under fielding regulations, a certain number of fielders must be within the inner circle.

Hales said he had spoken with umpires on the field to clarify what was happening.

"As soon as the bowler lets go of the ball you're allowed to leave the ring, which is what I was doing," Hales said.

"I think that's what they thought on the replay (that I was leaving early) but I was pretty sure I was leaving after he let it go."

Hales said he was trying to anticipate where the batsman would hit the ball.

"If someone goes for a reverse sweep, first slip moves after the ball is let go," he said.

"Once the ball is let go and you see the batsman swing, you can react in the field. For me I think it's fine, if it's in the rules. I don't think it's bad sportsmanship at all."

 

LISTEN! A quick-fire BBL finals preview on The Follow-On podcast

ON YOUR PHONE? CLICK HERE TO LISTEN

SUBSCRIBE: iTUNES | SPOTIFY | GOOGLE PODS

Hales had earlier top-scored with 60 from 37 balls as the Thunder posted 5-197 at Bellerive Oval.

He shared a century opening stand with Usman Khawaja, who returned to form with 54.

"We've been quite hot and cold actually. For us to click at an important stage of the tournament is good signs," Hales said of the partnership.

Spinner Jono Cook then took 4-21 as the Thunder bowled Hobart out for 140 and progressed to a do-or-die play-off in Adelaide against the Strikers on Saturday.

Watch every single KFC BBL match LIVE & On-Demand on KAYO with FOX CRICKET's unmatched commentary line-up. New to Kayo? Get your 14-day free trial & start streaming instantly >


The ‘split decision’ that cost man 18 days lost in the wild

Premium Content The ‘split decision’ that cost man 18 days lost in the wild

Robert Weber shares just how he came to be at Kilkivan property

WE DIDN’T LOSE HOPE: The moment politician found missing man

Premium Content WE DIDN’T LOSE HOPE: The moment politician found missing man

State MP Tony Perrett and wife Michele refused to stop searching for Robert Weber...

Meet your 2021 South Burnett citizens of the year

Premium Content Meet your 2021 South Burnett citizens of the year

In one of the most challenging years in recent history, numerous South Burnett...