ICC introduces new rule to stop malpractice of DRS by wicket-keepers


As the new year (2024) unfolded, the International Cricket Council (ICC) ushered in significant changes to the Decision Review System (DRS), aiming to address loopholes that wicket-keepers had exploited in the review mechanism. Recognizing the evolving dynamics of the game, the ICC implemented strategic modifications to ensure a fair and comprehensive assessment of on-field decisions.

These adjustments reflect the supreme cricket governing body’s commitment to maintaining the integrity of the sport and keeping pace with the nuanced strategies that players employ.

ICC’s change in DRS rule for stumping appeal

In recent instances, many cricket teams had adopted a strategy wherein wicket-keepers would deliberately dislodge the bails while appealing for a stumping, prompting the third umpire to also scrutinize potential caught-behind situations without the need for a formal review by the bowling team. This practice led to a proliferation of unnecessary stumping appeals.

This was evident during the India versus Australia Test series last year, as there were multiple occasions when the Australian team, with wicket-keeper Alex Carey at the helm, made stumping appeals. This often resulted in the initiation of a check for caught-behind appeals, effectively bypassing the need to take a review.

Under the new regulations, the third umpire will now have access only to a side-on camera angle and not the ultra-edge, providing a more focused and clarified perspective when adjudicating stumping appeals. This modification aims to curb the exploitation of the system and foster a fair and reasonable decision-making process, ensuring that teams adhere to the spirit of the game. Notably, the rule change had come into effect from December 12, 2023.

“The change confines a stumping review to only check for stumped, therefore preventing the fielding team a free review for other modes of dismissal (i.e, caught behind) without choosing a player review,” the rule-change states, as quoted by Cricbuzz.

Also READ: Australia Prime Minister Anthony Albanese clears his stand on Usman Khawaja’s stand-off with ICC

Change in substitute player’s rule

Another modification to cricket rules pertains to the concussion substitute provision. Under the revised regulations, a player entering the game as a concussion replacement will be restricted from bowling if the player they are replacing had been suspended from bowling prior to the substitution. The new restriction ensures that the replacement player adheres to the same bowling limitations as the original player, fostering a fair and consistent application of the rules in situations involving substitutes.

Also READ: Steve Waugh slams ICC for Test Cricket’s downfall following South Africa’s squad announcement for New Zealand tour

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