ICC cricket committee suggests limiting dimension of bats

London, June 3 (IANS) With an objective to restore balance in the game, the Anil Kumble-led Cricket Committee of the International Cricket Council (ICC) has suggested that the Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) should strongly consider limiting the dimensions of bats.

Expressing concern that cricket was increasingly becoming a batsman’s game, the committee, which met at the Lord’s ground on Thursday, was of the opinion that bats have become more powerful with larger ‘sweet-spots’ in recent times.

“The committee’s view was that MCC should strongly consider limiting the dimensions of cricket bats to help achieve a better balance between bat and ball,” an ICC release said.

“MCC sought the committee’s guidance on the desirability of making changes in order to redress the balance between bat and ball. The Committee received a research paper from MCC citing a wealth of scientific and statistical evidence showing bats have become more powerful in recent years, primarily due to having larger ‘sweet-spots’,” it added.

The committee — consisting of former international captains Rahul Dravid, Mahela Jayawardene, Andrew Strauss along with former Indian Team Director Ravi Shastri (media representative) — also expressed concern that a lot of batsmen were not using helmets which conform to British Safety Standard (BSS).

“The committee considered the matter of helmet safety following a presentation on injury surveillance trends by ICC medical consultant Dr Craig Ranson. The committee expressed concerns that there were still too many instances of international cricketers wearing helmets which did not meet the latest British Safety Standard (BSS),” it said.

“It recommended that the ICC should enforce the wearing of the latest BSS-compliant helmets in all international cricket.

The committee also considered a proposal from Cricket Australia for a concussion substitute to be tried for two years in domestic first-class cricket.

“The committee acknowledged the seriousness of the issue of concussion in cricket, and stressed the need for consistent concussion policy to be implemented in all countries, but its view was that the current laws and playing conditions allow players to receive the best possible medical treatment, and further change to the regulations in this area is not required at present,” it was stated.

The committee also hailed the member countries for their work on suspected illegal bowling actions.

“The committee noted considerable progress in policing suspect actions in international cricket and encouraged all countries to continue their efforts to screen bowlers in domestic competitions before they reached international level,” the release said.

–IANS

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