The next edition of the Big Bash League (BBL) will be following a strict time out rule for new batters, who risk losing their wicket if they are not ready to face their first delivery within 75 seconds from the previous dismissal.
In the newly proposed addition to the BBL playing conditions, the batters will be forced to avert time-wasting tactics or they could have to pay the ultimate prize.
Till the end of last season, the BBL had a time-out law of 60 seconds in place for the new incoming batters. But the umpires chose not to enforce it, being lenient on even those individuals who breached the rule by about a minute and a half.
But Cricket Australia (CA) has not taken such instances lightly and is looking to clamp down on wasted time, forcing players to reach the crease inside 75 seconds.
According to the cricket.com.au report, CA have proposed to extend the time-out from 60 to 75 seconds but, unlike last year, this law will be exercised by the umpires in a more uncompromised approach to safeguard the rules and viewer experience.
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Bowlers could get a chance to bowl free at stumps for batters who breach the time-out law in BBL
Yes, you read that right. Batters could be told to step aside while the bowler aims for the three sticks if they happen to breach the time-out law. If the bowler hits the stumps, the batter will be declared out at that very moment and will have to go back to the pavillion without playing a ball.
The report from cricket.com.au mentioned, “batters would not be sent packing immediately if they are not ready in time. Instead, they will have to stand aside and the bowler will be allowed to have a free delivery at the stumps. If the bowler misses, the batter can start their innings.”
“The proposed change is not intended to catch out sluggish batters, but rather to encourage faster play after match times ballooned to well beyond three hours in recent years.”
CA is hoping that the more stringent time-out policy will force batters to speed up their walk towards the playing arena and save crucial minutes at a time when some of the BBL games are stretching well beyond the three-hour mark.
The proposal, if accepted and implemented, will be applicable to both the BBL and WBBL in the 2021-22 Australian summer.
In international cricket, batters are allowed a maximum of three minutes to make the batting crease and start their innings as per Law 40 in the ICC adopted rules and playing conditions. But with the placing of dugouts just near the boundary ropes, most white-ball domestic leagues have their own shortened duration of the time limit in play.
The BBL being one such league now wants to cut down any excessive and unnecessary time-wasting. The officials might be seen given warnings and some leeways when they find that the batter is not entirely at fault, but the general approach to applying the time-out law is expected to be strict in the coming BBL.
Apart from this, CA and BBL authorities have also put on the table a proposal to cut down on the number of unofficial breaks for drinks and other reasons, with specified points during an innings when a drinks break can take place.
BBL had also adopted three new rules to its playing conditions last summer, focusing on giving itself a unique selling point in terms of on-field play than most other leagues in the world. The league saw the addition of ‘Power Surge’, ‘Bash Boost’ and ‘X-factor Player’ to its rules.