ICC mulling over in-game penalties for next WTC cycle

It requires a lot of time to complete a game of cricket. Hence, the T20 format was introduced for people who wanted some fast-paced cricket action. As a result, it gained phenomenal popularity over the years. However, the International Cricket Council (ICC) has always been warned by cricket purists to keep an eye on the craze for the longest format of the game in the form of Test cricket.

Slow over-rate is one of the major concerns of Test cricket. In a game that lasts five days, things can get monotonous and the issue becomes more grim when teams take more time on the field than they should. There are slow over-rate fines in place but that seems minuscule to certain people in comparison to the salaries of modern-day players. There have been calls for more severe penalties to be imposed on over-rate offenders. The points deduction penalty that was implemented during the World Test Championships has earned decent praise and as per the ICC CEO, Geoff Allardice, cricket’s apex governing body is all set to retain the rule for the next cycle as well.

Allardice, who attended ICC’s AGM in Durban on Thursday, July 13, stated that the men’s cricket committee is looking at potential in-game penalties from the next cycle of the WTC.

The scale of the fines is not having any material impact on the pace of play. The men’s cricket committee looked at the fines and the suggestions and then certainly balanced the level of fines that are being applied. They were very strong at the points deductions for over-rate penalties in the World Test Championship (WTC) to remain in place. Teams that do not heed the minimum pace of play jeopardise their opportunity to qualify for the WTC final,” Allardice was quoted as saying by ESPNcricinfo.

Australia missed the first edition of the WTC final because of over-rate penalty points

Consequently, the concerned authorities in the ICC are mulling over imposing in-game penalties in the next cycle of the WTC. Notably, in the limited overs format, the apex cricket governing body decided to impose certain fielding restrictions which can put the teams at a disadvantage. Thus, costing them the game in crucial moments. The ICC CEO, Geoff Allardice, also reminded about Team Australia. Notably, they were penalised in terms of points which led to their exit from the inaugural edition of the WTC final.

“We are still looking at ways in which we can make a difference within Test cricket because it is a concern. I know Australia missed the first edition of the WTC final because of over-rate penalty points, but we are looking at other measures. We have been able to introduce measures in T20 and ODI cricket with regards having an extra fielder inside the circle in the last few overs if over rates are slow, but [we are] looking for an in-game penalty for Test cricket as well,” Allardice concluded.