Saturday, April 15, 2017


OWZAT ??

A few days ago, the powers that run cricket introduced a range of new laws for the game. At first glance they seem sensible, which most of them are and there would seem little to complain about.  What is especially pleasing is the introduction of new powers for umpires to have more authority when dealing with bad behaviour on the field of play.   Unlike football or rugby, the powers open to cricket umpires have been limited but now they too will be able to award penalty runs, issue warnings and even expel players for bad behaviour.   About time too.

A number of technical changes will also be introduced including, for example, clarification of run-outs when a bat is in the air but not grounded; clarification about run-outs by the bowler when the non-striking batsman is backing up and, intriguingly, the fact that the new laws will be in a language which is `gender neutral.`   Having said that, however, a batsman of whatever gender will still be a `batsman.`

And it`s this perhaps timely encroachment into modern day `correctness` that might lead to the need for further clarification on the part of the lawmakers.   Will there have to be a `Third Person` in place of a `Third Man?`  What about the twelfth man?  And, in this oh so sensitive age, will fielding positions such as short leg, long leg, fine leg and square leg become accused of legism?   Perhaps most alarmingly `silly point` (which I have often mistaken for a parliamentary interjection by Diane Abbott) might have to become something like `intellectually challenged position.`   Well, it was always a daft place to field anyway.

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