ICC announces playing conditions for World Test Championship final
The International Cricket Council (ICC) has announced the playing conditions for the upcoming World Test Championship final, starting June 18 in Southampton. Notably, the two teams will be declared joint-winners in case of a draw, or a tie. Meanwhile, a Reserve Day has been kept to make up for any lost time during the regular days. Here is more.
When will the Reserve Day be used?
The Reserve Day will only be used if the lost playing time cannot be recovered through the normal provisions. Notably, the play won't extend to a sixth day if a positive result is not achieved after five full days of play. The final decision on the Reserve Day will be announced at the scheduled start of the last hour on Day 5.
New rules to come into effect
The implementation of new rules to playing conditions will come into effect in the the high-voltage clash between the top two Test sides. These include the check on short runs by TV umpires, the updated LBW referrals, and player reviews.
Here are the new rules
In case of short runs, the third umpire will automatically review all calls by the on-field umpires. For LBW reviews, the height margin of wicket zone has been increased to the top of stumps. Before reviewing an LBW decision, the fielding captain or the dismissed batter can check with the on-field umpires if they think a genuine attempt was made to play the ball.
A look at the other developments
The ICC has also announced that Grade 1 Dukes balls will be used in the WTC final. Notably, these decisions were made in June 2018, prior to the commencement of championship. Earlier this month, it was reported that the match will be held in the presence of 4,000 spectators at The Ageas Bowl. It remains to be seen if there is crowd turnout.
WTC: What about the next cycle?
While launching the WTC in 2019, the ICC had announced that it will continue with the championship in the 2021-2023 cycle too. India are scheduled to play a five-Test series in England, which will mark the beginning of next WTC cycle. It will be interesting to see if there are any changes in allocation of points in the series.