Originally Posted by zaremba
I couldn't find the clip when I looked for it yesterday but my recollection is different. Perhaps someone will dig it out for us - and if it shows I'm wrong then I will eat a big fat slice of humble pie (being wrong about matters cricketing is a constant state of being for me
I think you underestimate the ability of batsmen to "sum up the situation" almost instantaneously. When the bowler is delivering the ball the batsman often has much less than a second in which to assess the flight of the ball, to decide on a stroke and to execute it; they then are often able to decide in a split second whether to take a run once they've hit the ball. It probably takes something in the order of 3 seconds to complete a run, and a batsman who's not going to make it can be fully aware of that fact at a pretty early stage. That's why batsmen change direction to get in the way of the throw, which happens all the time. As for engineering a collision, it's not rocket science - you just aim for the area where the ball and/or fielder is heading. It doesn't take a genius.
It'd be very unusual for a batsman to back himself for the collision rather than trying to run the line of the throw. If he'd have stayed upright then the fielder would have been shying at the stumps while slightly off balance rather than lobbing it back over the stumps at the bowler's end.
When I saw the video the other night nothing suggested to me that he'd tried to run into anyone.