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ICC makes key changes to ODI playing conditions
MUMBAI: In a major relief for bowlers, the International Cricket Council (ICC) board has approved several key changes to playing conditions in ODIs by getting rid of compulsory catchers in overs 1-10, removing batting Powerplay between overs 15-40, and allowing five fielders outside the 30-yard circle in overs 41-50.
The ICC also said that all “no balls”, not just “foot faults”, will result in a free hit in both ODIs and T20Is. These playing conditions will come into effect for series starting on or after 5 July 2015.
ICC Chief Executive David Richardson said: “We have thoroughly reviewed the ODI format after a very successful ICC Cricket 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.
“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.”
The ICC board reviewed and adopted the recommendations of an Integrity Working Party which had been convened to review the global risks for international and domestic cricket created by the threat of corruption.
This decision will see a greater role for a central Anti-Corruption Unit and paves the way for greater coordination of preventative and investigative activity around the world with a unified vision to ‘keep cricket clean’.
Key recommendations that have been adopted include:
- Confirmation that the ICC’s Anti-Corruption Unit (ACU) will be the central focal point for all anti-corruption activities in international and domestic cricket and have enhanced intelligence capabilities;
- Acknowledgement of the need for greater coordination between the ACU and national anti-corruption bodies;
- Affirmation of the ACU’s accountability for all international cricket with the ACU also serving as the central coordinator for multi-jurisdictional cases;
- Renewed emphasis on a programme that encompasses prevention, disruption, investigation and prosecution in that order of priority;
- A requirement for all Full Members and Associate Members with ODI and T20I status to review their anti-corruption resources and adopt an anti-corruption code which includes the core principles contained in the ICC’s domestic template code within six months;
- A requirement for all ICC Full Member countries and Associate Members with ODI and T20I status to review their anti-corruption resources to ensure they effectively protect domestic cricket;
- An international panel to be established from which the members may, and the ICC will, draw their anti-corruption tribunals;
- The adoption of revised ‘standard operating procedures’ (SOPs) based on those formulated for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015;
- A thorough review of all training materials used for prevention, education and awareness to ensure that there is a consistency of message imparted, the most suitable and up to date techniques are used (such as video clips, scenarios and participative exercises) and records are retained of all those in receipt of training;
- The ICC and its members to take active steps to lobby for the criminalisation of match fixing in sport in all member countries and strengthen relationships with other anti-corruption stakeholders, including law enforcement agencies and betting monitoring companies.
ICC Chairman N. Srinivasan said: “This has been an extensive exercise, which clearly reflects our seriousness, endeavor and commitment to addressing and eradicating the menace of corruption from cricket. The successful implementation of these recommendations will help reduce the threat level but we need to remain vigilant and maintain a zero-tolerance approach.”
The Integrity Working Party was constituted at the 2014 Annual Conference in Melbourne and was advised by John Abbott CBE QPM, an independent expert with many years of experience in tackling corruption in sport.
ICC decided that a considerable amount of time should be set aside at the next board meeting in October for the directors and chief executives to discuss issues relating to bilateral cricket, including enhancing the context and value of Test and ODI series.
Srinivasan said: “It is time for all of the Members to look at ways in which we can generate more interest and value in our cricket.”
The ICC board received an update on international cricket and noted:
- The selection of S.Ravi and Chris Gaffaney to the Emirates Elite Panel of ICC Umpires and the emergence of a new generation of umpires from a wider range of countries
- Good quality pitches and good spirited player behaviour, in particular, in the recent ODI series between England and New Zealand
- Strong home performances from Bangladesh, which recently defeated Pakistan 3-0 and India 2-1 in ODI series
The ICC Board also received a presentation by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on its recent home series against Zimbabwe. It was encouraged by the enthusiasm of the fans in Pakistan and noted the seriousness with which the PCB had dealt with and was continuing to deal with the security challenges, and the Chairman of the Pakistan Task Team would be exploring options to maintain that progress.
ICC Strategy 2016-19
The ICC Board approved a new strategy for the organisation built around a vision of cricket becoming the ‘world’s favourite sport’.
Srinivasan said: “It is an ambitious and long-term vision for the ICC and its Members. We need the game to become more popular and sustainable in more countries. It is important that the ICC events continue to grow and that all international cricket becomes more appealing to the public.
“We also have an important role to play in protecting the integrity of the game and increasing the number of truly competitive teams.”
The strategy covers the following four broad areas of activity:
- Cricket: Providing a world-class environment, making sure men’s and women’s international cricket is attractive to play and watch
- Integrity: Protecting the integrity of the game
- Major events: Delivering successful major events and building their value
- Game and Market Development: Improving the quality and reach of international cricket
The ICC board received an update on Sri Lanka Cricket and reiterated its earlier position that the appointment of an Interim Committee of Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) by the government of Sri Lanka was a breach of the ICC’s constitution. The ICC board urged the Sports Minister of Sri Lanka to hold free and fair elections before the next ICC board meeting in October, adding that the ICC reserved the right to take further action against the SLC in the event of further non-compliance.
The ICC board noted the Associate and Affiliate Members’ decision, who as a group re-elected John Cribbin and Warren Deutrom for another two years as their representatives on the ICC Chief Executives’ Committee (ICC CEC), while David East was replaced by Greg Campbell of Cricket Papua New Guinea as their third CEC representative.
ICC Chairman N.Srinivasan thanked the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) for hosting the 2015 ICC Annual Conference, when he said: “It has been a very beneficial and productive week in which all the delegates got together to discuss issues of mutual interest. The arrangements and hospitality were excellent and on behalf of all the delegates, I thank the WICB as well as the Barbados Cricket Association (BCA) and Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc for hosting us this year.”