Players allowed to be sent off under new MCC laws

“We felt the time had come to introduce sanctions for poor player behaviour”

Image courtesy of: Zimbio

The MCC have passed new laws, which will come into effect on October 1, 2017, that will hand umpires the authority to send players off for severe breaches of behaviour.

There will four different levels when it comes to offences (see below for more details), the most serious of which are levels three and four, which will see a player removed from a game temporarily or permanently.

Level one will be nothing more than a warning, while level two will see five runs awarded t the other team immediately.

“We felt the time had come to introduce sanctions for poor player behaviour and research told us that a growing number of umpires at grass roots level were leaving the game because of it,” John Stephenson, the MCC’s head of cricket, said. “Hopefully these sanctions will give them more confidence to handle disciplinary issues efficiently, whilst providing a deterrent to the players.”

The MCC have also decided to implement restrictions on bat sizes in order to even the contest between bat and ball.

As a result of this, all bats have to be 108mm in width, 67mm in depth and have 40mm edges.

“The bat size issue has been heavily scrutinised and discussed in recent years,” Stephenson said. “We believe the maximum dimensions we have set will help redress the balance between bat and ball, while still allowing the explosive, big hitting we all enjoy.”

Meanwhile, when run outs occur during games, if a batsman is found to have grounded his bat beyond the crease before it goes up in the air, it will now be deemed as not out.

“If the bat (held by the hand) or another part of the batsman’s person is grounded beyond the popping crease and this contact with the ground is subsequently lost when the wicket is put down, the batsman will be protected from being run out if he/she is running or diving and has continued forward momentum towards the stumps and beyond,” an MCC statement said.

Running out the non-striker, otherwise known as Mankading, is also allowed up to any point before a bowler has released the ball.

Further reading – The four different levels that lead to an umpire sending a player off

Level 1

Offences include excessive appealing and showing dissent at an umpire’s decision. Following an official warning, a second Level 1 offence will result in five penalty runs being awarded to the opposing team.

Level 2

Offences (including throwing the ball at a player or making deliberate physical contact with an opponent during play), will result in the immediate awarding of five penalty runs to the opposing team.

Level 3

Offences (including intimidating an umpire or threatening to assault another player, team official or spectator) will result in five penalty runs and a removal of the offending player from the field for a set number of overs, depending on the format of the match.

Level 4

Offences (threatening an umpire or committing any act of violence on the field of play), will result in five penalty runs and the removal of the offending player for the remainder of the match. If the player is batting at the time of the offence, he/she will be recorded as ‘retired out’.

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