Two Counties Cricket Championship
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Rules and Regulations
Fitness for play
FITNESS FOR PLAY • As at 2011 season onwards it is SOLELY for the umpires to decide whether conditions of ground, weather , light or exceptional circumstances mean that it would be dangerous or unreasonable for play to take place • The umpires are the sole judges of the fitness of the pitch for play • Conditions shall not be regarded as either dangerous or unreasonable merely because they are not ideal • Conditions shall be considered as dangerous if there is a real and foreseeable risk to the safety of the players and umpires • Conditions shall be regarded as unreasonable if although posing no risk to safety it would not be sensible for play to proceed • If at any time the umpires together agree that the conditions of ground weather or light or any other exceptional circumstances are dangerous or unreasonable they shall immediately suspend play or not allow play to start or recommence • When there is a suspension in play it is the responsibility of the umpires to monitor conditions making inspections as often as appropriate unaccompanied by any players or club officials unless invited e.g. Groundsman • Immediately it is decided that conditions are no longer dangerous or unreasonable they shall call upon the players to resume. • Umpires take the lead in situation • There should be no delay in starting play or suspending play just because the ball or grass is wet and slippery. You have your cloth and there should be sawdust available during the day • If the bowlers have reasonable footholds, the umpires and fielders have the power of free movement, the batsmen can play their strokes and run between the wickets then there should not be delay in starting or reason to suspend • Small areas of surface water in the outfield should not really hold up play • The bowlers run up to a distance of 10 to 15 metres from the wicket should be dry enough to run on without slipping and sliding. • Ensure sawdust available • Particular attention should be paid to the pitch area. If the whole pitch is damp then there is the possibility that play could take place remembering the factors mentioned in earlier slides • If there is a mixture of wet and dry patches extra care is needed in deciding to play or not as there could be the risk to safety of players and indeed umpires • Should the decision be made that initially unfit for play then regular monitoring of drying and general weather conditions should continue • Whilst it is not primarily the duty of the umpire to decide how the pitch will play they do need to be fully aware of their duty of care to the participants • In the event of showery conditions if there is the possibility of it passing over quickly and not being too heavy an argument can be made for staying out and continuing play. • Consultation with colleague is essential with regard to other factors mentioned earlier e.g. freedom of movement etc • In the event of heavy rain or thunderstorm play will cease immediately and subject to their availability covers being deployed • With regard to restarting play in light rain after an interval the decision has to be taken as to whether these conditions would have led to a suspension of play themselves • Lightning provokes fear in many for obvious reasons. Under the duty of care there is the recommendation that the 30/30 rule as laid out by various safety and meteorological bureaus be implemented. • Thunder follows lightning flash within 30 seconds or less people in open are at risk of being struck so play ceases immediately • Return to field of play and restarting should not be until at least 30 minutes after the last lightning flash • Light conditions can be governed by background, trees, buildings, sightscreens or lack of, etc and can vary quite radically from end to end. Conditions that are satisfactory when a slow bowler is on need not necessarily be so when a fast bowler is operating or vice versa. It is difficult without the light meter to lay down a general standard but to err on the side of caution has to be the better choice • The duty of care to the players of both sides is paramount and indeed the umpires safety. If the ball cannot be seen clearly by all then injury could easily occur • In evaluating the conditions of ground weather or light the state of the game is irrelevant in arriving at the decision • Do not be bullied
Law Changes
Law Changes Effective Oct 2010 • MCC , the guardian of the Laws of Cricket, has produced a 4th edition of the 2000 code and has introduced changes aimed at providing more fairness to both sides and reducing the amount of playing time lost • Please ensure you have the up to date version of The Laws of Cricket and are conversant with these changes • THE TOSS • All previous timings, nominations of players etc remain unchanged but the captain winning the toss now has to notify the opposing captain and umpires IMMEDIATELY of his decision to bat or to take the field. Once notified this decision cannot be changed • If the captain is not available then a deputy shall act for him until he is but that deputy MUST be one of the nominated players as confirmed by the signed team sheet At least one umpire is required to attend the toss FIELDING BEYOND THE BOUNDARY • A ball may be caught subject to the provisions of Law 32 or fielded after it has crossed the boundary provided that a) the first contact with the ball is by the fielder either with some part of his person grounded within the boundary or whose final contact with the ground before touching the ball was within the boundary b) neither the ball, nor any fielder in contact with the ball, touches or is grounded beyond, the boundary at any time during the act of making the catch or fielding the ball • Fielders first contact with ball must be within the boundary but can still toss the ball up, cross the boundary and return to complete the catch or field the ball • Fielders cannot go outside the boundary, leap up and knock ball back inside the boundary to be fielded or caught by him or other team member • The act of making the catch or of fielding the ball shall start from the time when the ball first comes into contact with some part of the fielder’s person and shall end when a fielder obtains complete control over the ball and his own movement and has no part of his person touching or grounded beyond the boundary FAIR DELIVERY – THE FEET This aspect of the Law has one amendment in that the bowler’s front foot must land with some part of the foot whether grounded or raised etc. as stated in Law NOW on the same side of the imaginary line joining the two middle stumps. • Previously you will recall it was the placement of the back foot over that line that was not a fair delivery • Bowler bowling right arm over the wicket must have both feet to left of the imaginary line • otherwise NO BALL and vice versa for left arm over • There has been in some people’s eyes a change regarding the number of bounces before a delivery is considered to be a no ball. • MCC, the law makers, are clear and to clarify this has NOT changed and remains as more than twice or rolls along the ground • ECB for their recreational cricket have adopted more than once so always check the competition rules before start of play • PRACTICE ON THE FIELD • There are no changes to the Laws regarding practice on the pitch and rest of square prior to start of play • Between the call of Play and Time is where the changes are in that a) Bowler CANNOT now bowl the ball deliberately into the ground to another fielder by way of warm up as this is considered as contravening Law 42.3 ( The match ball - changing its condition ). • Any contravention of this results in player not being able to bowl until at least one hour has elapsed or 30 minutes of playing time since the contravention – whichever is sooner. Despite earlier reference to Law 42 the contravention is deal with under law 17 leaving Law 42 unchanged in respect of other issues relative to condition of ball • Bowler can using his arm action bowl the ball direct to the fielder in the air and practice run up is allowed The consideration is then time wasting b) Fielders cannot practise with anyone e.g. coach outside the boundary and with colleagues it is to be kept to a minimum to avoid time wasting and gaining unfair advantage Any practice at the fall of a wicket must cease as soon as batsman steps on to the square Any contravention see Law 42.9 – Time Wasting c) Batsman will not practice on the outfield • WICKET PUT DOWN • There is now the additional way of the wicket being put down • By any part of the bat becoming detached bat breaks in playing shot and piece goes on to put wicket down then it is unfortunate but OUT just as if it had been as a result of say the cap falling off • BATSMAN OUT OF HIS GROUND • If a batsman in making a run has made his ground in an acceptable manner according to the Laws but his momentum or ground condition causes total loss of contact with the ground then should the wicket be broken at that time he shall be given not out on appeal. The batsman will be considered still to be in his ground despite the loss of contact having gained it previously within the circumstances of the play • BATSMAN DAMAGING THE PITCH • On the first instance of either batsman causing avoidable damage to the pitch the umpire shall, when the ball is dead, now issue a first and FINAL warning together with following all the usual advising protocols. • The warning applies throughout the innings You will notice one part of the previous process has been done away with in going to first and final straight away • Should a further instance occur then, on the ball becoming dead, the bowlers end umpire shall Disallow all runs to batting side from that delivery other than penalty for no ball or wide(s) Award 5 penalty runs to the fielding side / Return batsman to original ends / Follow usual advising protocols / Both umpires to complete a report Repeat above for any further instances FITNESS FOR PLAY • It is now SOLELY for the umpires together to decide whether either conditions of ground, weather or light or exceptional circumstances mean that it would be dangerous or unreasonable for play to take place A separate presentation has been prepared regarding this subject alone ADDITIONAL MATERIAL • Videos and PDF documents regarding changes can be viewed by going to and the title to view is Oct 2010 law changes explained