Coming soon: day and night Test matches

ICC also amends fielding restriction, DRS, bouncer rules.

Floodlit Tests will signal a new era in international cricket.

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

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