ICC To Introduce Red-Card System In CPL For Slow Over-Rate

Cricket is on the brink of a transformative rule change to combat the persistent issue of slow overrates. Taking a page from football’s playbook, a revolutionary red-card system is set to be implemented, potentially revolutionizing the pace and duration of cricket matches. The new rule mandates that teams lose a player if they fail to adhere to the stipulated time limit for overs, adding urgency and consequences to the game.

While cricket has made significant progress, slow overrates have remained a concern, hampering the sport’s ability to provide fans with a swift and engaging experience. Although T20 cricket has made strides in bridging the gap, concerns surrounding match duration persist due to prolonged matches caused by sluggish over rates by bowling teams.

The International Cricket Council (ICC) has taken a more stringent approach to addressing the issue. In addition to fines, teams now face point deductions in the World Test Championship (WTC) table as punishment for slow over rates. Last year, a rule that required teams to position more fielders within the inner circle during the final overs if they lagged behind the time limit was introduced.

Taking a bold step, the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) in the West Indies has embraced a football-inspired red-card system. This innovative rule entails that a team will lose one player for the 20th over if they fail to meet the prescribed time requirement. In the T20 format, teams are allocated 85 minutes to complete their overs. Specific time targets for each over are set to ensure the game’s pace remains consistent.

The fielding team is expected to complete the 17th in 72 minutes and 15 seconds, the 18th in 76 minutes and 30 seconds, and the 19th in 80 minutes and 45 seconds during this year’s CPL competition. The enforcement of over rates will be managed by third umpires, who will communicate with captains through on-field umpires at the end of each over. Graphics will be employed to visually depict the team’s progress concerning the over rate. The league has noted exceptions for instances such as injuries, DRS (Decision Review System), and cases of batting time-wasting.

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As the 2023 CPL Men’s season kicks off on August 16, this groundbreaking rule change is set to be implemented, promising a significant shift in how the sport is played. The Women’s tournament, scheduled for August 30 and September 10, will also adopt these rules.

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