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ICC does away with batting power-play, makes cricket bowler-friendly

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Bridgetown (Barbados): In a bid to make the sport more balanced between bat and ball, the International Cricket Council (ICC) announced several changes which will make the game a little more bowler-friendly after the rules come in to effect July 5 onwards.

The biggest change that will come about, is that the sport’s governing body has decided to drop the batting power-play which is held between overs 15-40. The ICC also decided to do away with the compulsory catches rule in the 10 overs.

credits: financialexpress.com
credits: financialexpress.com

Another major change that will help the bowlers in the death overs is that from July 5 onwards, five fielders, and not four, will be allowed outside the 30-yard circle in the last 10 overs. These rules are applicable in One-Day International (ODI) cricket.

Another change that will be applicable in both ODIs and Twenty20 Internationals is that all no balls, and not just foot faults, will result in free hits.

“We have thoroughly reviewed the ODI format after a very successful World Cup. There was no need to make any radical changes to what has proved to be a vibrant and popular format but we wanted to take this opportunity to make the format simpler and easier to follow for the public as well as maintaining a balance between bat and ball,” ICC Chief Executive, David Richardson, said in a statement on Saturday.

“In making these adjustments, we have tried to ensure that ODI cricket retains the attacking, aggressive and thrilling brand, which has recently become the hallmark of 50-over cricket and sets us on a positive path to the next World Cup in England in 2019.”

All the decisions were taken during the ICC Annual Conference, which concluded here on Friday under the chairmanship of Narayanaswami Srinivasan, who is a former Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) president.

The changes to the playing conditions were approved by the ICC Chief Executives’ Committee, which is chaired by Richardson, on Monday and Tuesday. The recommendations were made by the ICC Cricket Committee.

The key changes:

– No compulsory catchers in overs 1-10 (ODIs)
– No batting Power-play between overs 15-40 (ODIs)
– Five fielders allowed outside the 30-yard circle in overs 41-50 (ODIs)
– All ‘no balls’, not just ‘foot faults’, to result in a free hit (ODIs & T20Is)

(IANS)

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It Should Be The Responsibility of The BCCI To Unearth Cricketing Talent

Unfortunately, the player, in order to please the authorised individuals, becomes a "yes man" to all concerned. After all, "money does make the world go round."

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The Indian team under the flamboyant Virat Kohli has been an enlightened side, looking to make a mark in the history of the game. India, one of favourites to win the upcoming World Cup in England and Wales, have all the ingredients to emerge as the worthy winners. Wikimedia Commons

In cricket, more than in any other team sport, the captain plays a significant role. The onus of all the field placements, bowling changes and behaviour of the players solely rest on his/her shoulder.

The shorter the format, the more difficult it is for the captain to make plans, ascertain his thoughts and execute them. The field restriction rules amplify his problems further, and one can see a helpless leader in the T20 format hoping for divine blessings at most times.

The Indian team under the flamboyant Virat Kohli has been an enlightened side, looking to make a mark in the history of the game. India, one of favourites to win the upcoming World Cup in England and Wales, have all the ingredients to emerge as the worthy winners.

They have a strong and well-established batting and bowling line-up along with a very good fielding unit. Everything seems perfect.

However, the performance of Kohli after the series of recent losses in the shorter format against New Zealand, Australia and now in the Indian Premier League (IPL) has sparked concern amongst the millions of Indian cricket followers.

Fortunately for Kohli, he has the backing of the brilliant cricketing mind of Mahendra Singh Dhoni when playing for India. But in a crunch situation and on a world platform like the World Cup, Kohli will have to stand on his own two feet.

The two World Cup winning Indian captains — Kapil Dev and Dhoni — are both strong personalities who led through their natural cricketing instincts.

Although lots have been written on leadership and how it is important to strategise towards a goal, in cricket, however, one’s basic instinct is more important than in any other field.

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They have a strong and well-established batting and bowling line-up along with a very good fielding unit. Everything seems perfect. Pixabay

I remember making fielding and bowling changes as a captain based on my natural gut instincts, which often proved successful. I was reprimanded when they failed, but I could bear with that failure rather than the other way around.

Kohli has shown that he is a decisive leader when he leads the Indian side in Test matches. After all, India are the number one side in the world. But he seems to struggle when it comes to the shorter formats. He needs to control every aspect of the game for his franchisee Royal Challengers Bangalore and use the experience of a Gary Kirsten only as a sounding board.

Dhoni is the only captain in the IPL who’s in control at the moment. Maybe his long standing equation with coach Stephen Fleming has compartmentalised his responsibilities well.

The IPL franchise owners must realise that they are not in the same league with football and rugby in Britain or basketball and baseball in the United States. The IPL is a commercially viable tournament of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) that has a two-month calendar each year and nothing more.

During the inception of the tournament, one of the criteria was to encourage cricket and develop cricket academies and centres of excellence. But domestic cricket in India already had an existing structure for it.

This, therefore, makes it unviable for the private establishments, which are direct threats to the cricket associations which are present here. The IPL team owners have gone totally awry in the recruitment of support staff and other personnel who are part and parcel of the franchises.

Each IPL team has former cricket legends as mentors, well-known international coaches, batting, fielding and bowling experts with assistants and many more helpers who accompany all of them.

Majority of them are with the teams during the initial months before the tournament and then during the event. But the senior and established players take the centre stage only a few days before the start of the IPL, as the cramped international calendar makes it impossible for them to be released. Even the Indian domestic cricketers remain busy, as with three different formats of the game, cricket has almost become a 365-day affair.

I can well imagine the confusion in the minds of a captain and a player in many of the IPL teams. The other day, while watching the IPL, I imagined myself in the position of Shreyas Iyer, the captain of Delhi Capitals.

The young captain has Ricky Ponting, Sourav Ganguly, Mohammad Kaif and Pravin Amre as advisors. All of them have been successful, not just on the field but also off it. Ganguly and Ponting were acclaimed as the best captains during their playing days.

And hailing from Mumbai, Iyer must have interacted a lot with Amre. So one can well imagine Iyer and his teammates’ dilemma as to whom to listen to. I am sure the other players in the IPL are also facing the same problem.

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Each IPL team has former cricket legends as mentors, well-known international coaches, batting, fielding and bowling experts with assistants and many more helpers who accompany all of them. 
Pixabay

This kind of support staff is ideal if one has a full year programme or if its for a national side. But it is a futile exercise, as well as expenditure, for a two-month tournament which has no permanency for a junior or a senior player.

Unfortunately, the player, in order to please the authorised individuals, becomes a “yes man” to all concerned. After all, “money does make the world go round.”

Also Read: Live Football And Game Schedule on The Fscore Site

Although the IPL is great for Indian cricket, especially for the young talent to get recognised, a more compact staffing and performance-based leadership of a captain and a coach is the best way forward.

Presently, the IPL teams are functioning like the popular saying “too many cooks spoil the broth”. The franchises are not the messiahs of Indian cricket and it should be the responsibility of the BCCI to unearth cricketing talent, not theirs. (IANS)