‘Stop Clock’ Rule in International Cricket Introduced by ICC – Explained

The ICC ( International Cricket Council ) has introduced a new stop-clock rule to inject more discipline and manage time efficiently. The stop clock will be displayed on the ground, counting down from 60 to zero seconds.

What’s the Purpose?

The purpose of the stop clock is to restrict the amount of time taken between overs. If the fielding side fails to start a new over within 60 seconds of the previous over being completed, they will receive two warnings and eventually a five-run penalty. The third umpire will be responsible for determining the start of the clock, which occurs when the last ball of the previous over has been called dead or any umpire or player review from the final ball of the previous over has been completed.

Trial Duration

The ICC will trial a new ‘Stop Clock’ rule in men’s ODIs and T20Is between December 2023 and April 2024, starting with the West Indies vs. England T20I series. The rule aims to reduce time taken between overs, with the fielding team required to start a new over within 60 seconds of the previous one. The trial will cover approximately 59 matches, and the results will be assessed at the end of the trial period.

ICC’s Stand

“We are continually looking at ways to speed up the pace of play across international cricket,” Wasim Khan, ICC general manager said. He added, “The stop-clock trial in white-ball international cricket follows the introduction of a successful new playing condition in 2022, which resulted in the fielding team only being allowed four fielders outside of the inner circle if they were not in a position to bowl the first ball of their final over in the stipulated time. The outcomes of the stop clock trial will be assessed at the end of the trial period.”

Conditions in which the clock can be canceled (if already started):

Here are the situations where the stop clock will be paused, even if it has already started:

  • New batter: When a new batter arrives at the crease between overs.
  • Drinks break: When an official drinks break is announced.
  • Injury treatment: If an umpire approves on-field treatment for an injured batter or fielder.
  • Force majeure: If time is lost due to circumstances beyond the fielding team’s control.

Starting the clock: The third umpire decides when to start the clock. This happens either:

  • Dead ball: After the last ball of the previous over is declared dead.
  • Review completed: After any umpire or player review of the previous over’s final ball is completed.

Unprepared teams: If the fielding side is ready to resume within the 60-second timeframe, but the batting team is not, the umpires will assess if the provisions for “batter wasting time” apply.

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