The International Cricket Council today introduced changes to the laws governing international cricket based on the proposals presented to them by their technical committee. The biggest of these amendments was the go-ahead for staging day and night Test matches — a move that will revolutionise the way the game’s traditional format is played. [See the full list of amendments]
The amendments come into effect October 30 onwards when New Zealand take on Sri Lanka in a one-off T20 International.
“Participating countries may agree to play day/night Test matches,” ICC said in its announcement. “The home and visiting boards will decide on the hours of play which will be six hours of scheduled play per day while the two boards will also decide on the precise brand, type and colour of ball to be used for the match.”
Test cricket, which began in 1877, has been largely not tampered with. But with the introduction of night games, the red ball and white flannels will give way to something more contemporary. It is possible that coloured jerseys will be accompanied with bright pink-coloured balls, which have been trialled in domestic cricket in England and South Africa.
POWERPLAY RULES AMENDED
In one-day internationals, instead of three blocks of Powerplays (of 10, 5 and 5 overs), two will be used from now on. The first 10 overs will allow the fielding side to place just two men outside the 30-yard circle. The second block of five overs needs to be claimed by the batting side before the 40th over with only three fielders allowed outside the circle.
The biggest twist in the rules here is that in the non-Powerplay overs, only four fielders will be allowed outside the circle – one less than permitted earlier. It is a move that can only inflate the already high scoring rates in modern cricket.
The ICC has also tried to make one bowler-friendly amendment: bowlers can bowl two bouncers per over as against the one earlier.
The other amendments
DRS (Test and ODIs)
Clause 3.3 (ii) of Appendix 2, which deals with LBW protocols, has been amended and the margin of uncertainty applicable to the point of impact with the pad has been increased so that it is the same as provided for determining the projected point of impact with the stumps i.e. if the centre of the ball is shown to be impacting in line within an area demarcated by a line drawn down the middle of the outer stumps (and the bottom of the bails), then the decision will always be out. If the whole of the ball is shown to be impacting outside the line of the stumps, then the decision will always be not out. If there is anything in between, the original on-field decision will stand. As such, this clause will now read as follows: "If a 'not out' decision is being reviewed, in order to report that the point of impact is between wicket and wicket (i.e. in line with the stumps), the evidence provided by technology should show that the centre of the ball at the moment of interception is in line within an area demarcated by a line drawn below the lower edge of the bails and down the middle of the outer stumps. "If an 'out' decision is being reviewed, in order to report that the point of impact is not between wicket and wicket (i.e. outside the line of the stumps), the evidence provided by technology should show that no part of the ball at the moment of interception is between wicket and wicket."
No-balls (Tests, ODIs and T20Is)
It is now mandatory for the TV umpire to check for no-balls after each dismissal not permitted by no-balls.
Dead Ball (Tests, ODIs and T20Is)
Clause 23.4, Umpire calling and signalling 'Dead Ball', now reads as: "In a match where Spydercam is being used, either umpire shall call and signal 'dead ball', should a ball that has been hit by the batsman make contact, while still in play, with the Spydercam or its cable. The ball shall not count as one of the over and no runs shall be scored."
Over-rates (Tests, ODIs and T20Is)
In the event of any time allowances being granted to the fielding team under 16.2 (d) (time wasting by batting team), then such time shall be deducted from the allowances granted to the batting team in the determination of its over-rate.
Although the duration of the lunch and tea intervals remain unchanged i.e. 40 and 20 minutes respectively (as per Clause 15.1), the host team, with the consent of the opposing side, can apply to the ICC for an approval to depart from the standard playing conditions to provide for intervals of 30 minutes each.
One Over Per Side Eliminator (T20 Internationals)
In both innings of the one over per side eliminator, the fielding side shall choose from which end to bowl. Only nominated players in the main match may participate in the OOPSE. Should any player (including the batsmen and bowler) be unable to continue to participate in the OOPSE due to (an) injury, illness or other wholly acceptable reasons, the relevant Laws and Playing Conditions as they apply in the main match shall also apply in the OOPSE. Any penance time being served in the main match shall be carried forward to the OOPSE.
The fielding captain or his nominee shall select the ball with which he wishes to bowl his over in the OOPSE from the box of spare balls provided by the umpires. Such box to include the balls used in the main match, but no new balls. The team fielding first in the OOPSE shall have first choice of ball. The team fielding second may choose to use the same ball as chosen by the team bowling first. If the ball needs to be changed, then playing conditions as stated for the main match shall apply.
Over-rate time allowances
In addition to the available allowances under Clause 16.2 (Minimum Over-Rates), additional allowance of one minute will be given for the fall of each of the sixth, seventh, eighth and ninth wickets.