Friday, September 30, 2011

New cricket rules start this weekend

Two new balls will be used by a fielding side from each end in one-day cricket when revised rules for the international game come into force on Saturday.

The changes were approved by the International Cricket Council's Executive Board in May, following proposals from its Cricket Committee.

Besides two new balls, to be used in alternate overs, there will also be a change in powerplays in ODIs.

The total number of powerplay overs will remain at 20 per innings with the first block of 10 being at the start of the innings.

"The remaining second and third block of (five) powerplay overs may not be taken so as to commence earlier than the 16th over nor be completed later than the 40th over," the ICC said Thursday in a statement.

The restrictions will not apply for reduced innings of a scheduled duration of less than 40 overs.

A runner will not be allowed for an injured player during Test, ODI or Twenty20. However, the injured or ill batsman will have the option of retiring hurt and returning to bat at the fall of ninth wicket.

In another development, if an umpire feels that a batsman, while running between the wickets, has significantly changed his direction and obstructed a fielder's attempt to run him out, the batsman should be given out for obstructing the field.

"It shall not be relevant whether the run out would have been affected or not," the ICC said, adding that "the on-field umpires are entitled to consult the third umpire in deciding whether the obstruction was willful or not."

Other changes provide extra time to complete a Test match and affect a bowler's attempt to run out a non-striker before delivery.

Umpires can decide to play 15 minutes - a minimum of four overs - of extra time at a scheduled lunch or tea interval if requested by a captain and if, "in the umpires' opinion, it would bring about a definite result in that session," the amended rule states.

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