‘They don’t have big strides’ – Commentator criticised for ‘sexist’ no-ball analysis during Bangladesh-Sri Lanka women’s T20I
A clip from the ongoing Bangladesh Women’s tour of Sri Lanka has been shared widely on social media, with a commentator criticised for suggesting that it’s “unpardonable” for a women’s cricketer to bowl a front-foot no ball.
The clip, from the first Sri Lanka-Bangladesh T20I in Colombo, shows commentator Roshan Abeysinghe expressing his surprise when Bangladesh left-arm spinner Nahida Akter bowled a no ball in the 13th over of Sri Lanka’s innings.
“It’s a no ball as well. Now this is unpardonable,” Abeysinghe is heard saying. “Unpardonable on two counts: one, a spinner; second thing, a lady… a women’s cricketer. I don’t think they have big strides, so in that context, very very surprised how she could overstep.”
In fact, replays show that Akter did not overstep: while in her delivery stride, she accidentally knocked the bails at the non-striker’s end off with her foot.
“Yeah [it’s the bails being dislodged], because I told you it can never be a stride,” Abeysinghe continued.
On social media, there was considerable backlash against the commentator, with the analysis labelled “nonsensical” and “sexist”.
Such a crap bit of commentary from start to finish. If he took a break from his nonsensical sexist comments, he might have noticed the bails were knocked off. Maddening for so many reasons.
— Aatif Nawaz (@AatifNawaz) May 9, 2023
Uncle @RoshanCricket, I respect a lot of your work, but you have let all Sri Lankans down today with these comments. https://t.co/F8j2C2r15m
— Mark Machado (@MarkMachado) May 9, 2023