The International Cricket Council (ICC) have been constantly keeping a tab on how the game is being played nowadays. The teams have been abiding by the set of rules and regulations formed by the ICC.
Any team or a player violates the Code of Conduct, the fine is imposed on the team or on the player. However, it is good to note that the majority of players have played the game professionally in the best interest of the team.
It is cognizance of the fact that the ICC has been coming up with rule changes over the years. This time too, they are set to make major rule changes, which are effective from June 1, 2023, onwards. Now, let’s take a glimpse at the three major rule changes by the ICC.
1. No soft signal anymore
Yes, no more soft signals in the sport! The ICC has decided to scrap the soft signal from its rule book, a decision that will take effect from June 7, i.e. ICC World Test Championship final between India and Australia. Earlier, the on-field umpire had to come up with a soft signal while evaluating the dismissal when a fielder takes a catch but without conclusive evidence.
However, it could also be the umpire’s fault. In this case, the decision will be taken to the third umpire who will check the dismissal based on the video footage but if he doesn’t find any conclusive evidence, then the umpire’s soft signal would come into play. So, now the ICC decided to remove this ‘soft signal’ rule.
2. Usage of helmets for high-risk positions
Cricket is an unpredictable game and it is absolutely imperative for the players to remain alert during the passage of play. The ICC has discussed players’ safety which is absolutely important. As a result, the committee decided that it was best to make the use of helmets ‘mandatory’ in high-risk positions to ensure the safety of player.
3. New free hit rule
Meanwhile, the ICC has come up with a new free-hit rule, meaning that any runs scored off a free-hit delivery when the ball hits the stumps will be counted as runs scored. Yes, the batters can now be bowled off a free-hit delivery and can also look for a run, thus giving the batting team an advantage.