During the 19th century, the bowlers considered handling the ball was as one of the unique tricks of dismissing the batsman in cricket. The rule states that the umpire would declare the batsman out if he is found touching the ball with his hand intentionally.
ICC made an exception in the year 1950 that the batsmen would remain not out if he touches the ball while trying to protect himself from the injury. This rule was later on integrated into the law of obstructing the field during the rearrangement of laws in 2017.
Only 10 batsmen have lost their wicket in this fashion in international cricket of which 7 instances have come in test cricket while 3 of them in the ODI format. South African player Russell Endean became the first victim of this rule during the 1957 Test match against England.
The first batsman to lose his wicket for handling the ball in first-class cricket was James Grundy who became a victim in the year 1857. Surprisingly, the batsman can even be declared out for returning the ball to a fielder. Charles Wright was the first player in first-class cricket to lose his wicket in this fashion.
The year 2017 saw ICC doing a major change in this law as they removed handling the ball from the ways of dismissal and merged it into the law of obstructing the field.
In the last few years, the no of batsmen losing their wicket due to handling the ball has reduced to a certain extent. The last batsman to get out in this fashion was Ben Stokes. This incident happened during the one-day international between England and Australia.
Here is the list of top 5 batsmen who have got out in this bizarre fashion.
#1 Cheteshwar Pujara
The fans label Cheteshwar Pujara, the right-handed batsman from Saurashtra, as the next Rahul Dravid of India due to his solid defence. Pujara has been the cornerstone of the Indian team in test cricket since last few years. Currently, he is one of the most dependable batsmen for India in the longest format.
Pujara became the victim of this law while playing for Derbyshire in the English County Championship. During the opening day of the 4-day match against Leicestershire, Pujara while trying to defend the ball lost his wicket in this unique way.
Cheteshwar Pujara became the first player to lose his wicket in this way in England since 1996. Earlier Karl Krikken was dismissed in the same manner while playing for Derbyshire on the same ground.
Here is the video of Pujara losing his wicket while trying to prevent the ball from hitting the stumps.