The International Cricket Council (ICC) Cricket Committee held a meeting on Thursday to take some key decisions with regard to certain rules in world cricket. Led by former Indian captain Anil Kumble, the committee took some bold and crucial decisions going ahead. Notably, the meeting took place on April 1 through a series of virtual conference calls.
1. Umpire’s call stays
The umpire’s call has been the most debated topic in cricket in recent times. While the fans had demanded to remove it, the committee decided that umpire’s call is needed with the technology not 100% accurate. There was a prolonged discussion on the issue and the committee analysed the use of umpire’s call extensively.
Reflecting on the same, Anil Kumble said, “The principle underpinning DRS was to correct clear errors in the game whilst ensuring the role of the umpire as the decision maker on the field of play was preserved, bearing in mind the element of prediction involved with the technology. Umpire’s Call allows that to happen, which is why it is important it remains.”
2. Rules regarding DRS and third umpire
The protocols regarding the usage of DRS was also discussed in the meeting. It has been decided that the height margin of the Wicket Zone will be lifted to the top of the stumps for LBW review. It will be done to ensure the same umpire’s call margin around the stumps for both height and width.
Other than that, a player will be able to ask the umpire whether a genuine attempt has been made to play the ball before deciding to review an LBW decision. It has also been decided that the third umpire will check a replay of any short run that has been called and will be able to correct any error prior to the next ball being bowled.
3. COVID-19 regulations will remain
Considering that the pandemic is still not over and there are a lot of restrictions still prevailing in various countries, the committee decided to continue with the new regulations they brought for the game during the unprecedented times. This means that the flexibility to be able to appoint home umpires remains where neutral umpires were previously required.
Talking about the other key things, the additional DRS review per team per innings will continue to be given across all formats. While the ban on using saliva to polish the ball also remains, a COVID-19 substitute in Test matches will also be available.