Solutions to Time Wastage: Ideas by Simon Doull

Image courtesy of Cricbuzz

AB de Villiers has brought up the issue of T20 cricket taking too long. Simon Doull brought up this issue at the beginning of April. These are some of my comments on ideas he mentioned. Before going into his suggestions; I believe it is necessary to talk about the time that the match is supposed to take. The game is supposed to take about three and a half hours. Aaron Henderson has broken this neatly.

Overs bowled: 80 minutes per innings.

Innings break: 20 minutes.

Change of ends: 19 minutes.

Strategic Time Outs: 10 minutes

This comes to 209 minutes which gives the bowling team an extra minute to complete their game. The main issue can now be dealt with.

Fee Penalty vs. Over Penalty: Simon Doull mentioned that the fee penalty imposed is not a significant deterrent for the players or captains. Further he also mentioned that the franchises ends up paying it anyway. I do not believe that monetary penalties work for the simple reason that a percentage of a match fee is not significant. Previously overs were docked but the ICC in their wisdom decided to move away from this because the people who attend the game and those who watch it are not getting their money’s worth if this happens. Doull brought out a point about what would happen if the team bowling second bowls slowly and whether they will be docked overs in the next game? I completely support the idea of having overs deducted but I also believe that the spectators should not be punished for something that that the players have done. I do not agree with runs being added to the side batting second which the ECB may introduce with The Hundred. As an extension I do not agree with suggestions that the Net Run Rate should be decreased.

Changing Balls every Four Overs: Dew has played a factor in increasing the time taken to bowl overs. I really like Doull’s suggestion of making mandatory changes to the ball every four overs. This would reduce the time taken to make the ball dry.

Strategy Breaks: Simon Doull brought up the issue of bowlers and captains taking too much time between balls to decide what to do next. This is probably the biggest time waster. Simon says that he does not have a solution to this. I have a few ideas to solve this. Strategy Breaks exist for a reason. Enforce whatever plans that needs to be done within that time limit. If needed then increase the time outs by 30 seconds and allow the bowling team to take this whenever they want to. The Hundred addresses this issue to a certain extent by stipulating that the break should be taken between the 26 and 75 ball. This does not solve the problem as most of the strategising happens in the last few overs of the game rather than the middle.

Player Bans: This suggestion is extremely ruthless but sometimes you need an amputation to save a life. Ban players for time wasting. This should not be limited to the captain. Extend it to the bowler and other people involved in the talks. I would even support enforcing the bans within the game. This would be a bigger deterrent than match fees.

Ball Replacement: Sixes are more frequent and being hit further. Having something as simple as sitting as close to the boundary as possible will save time.

Gardening: It seems only fair that the batsmen should be penalised if the bowlers are going to be punished. Batsmen should be ready to play as soon as the bowler reaches his mark. They can save the fist pumping for later. There is no need for discussing how to play each ball or dabbing the pitch to slow down the game.

Innings Break: AB de Villiers mentioned that the innings break should be cut down from 20 minutes to 10 minutes. I cannot attest to how much time is needed between games but if it helps finish the game on time then it should be seriously considered.

Points Deduction: Deduct 50% of the points for a win for every match that goes beyond time. That should be a good reason to finish games on time.

As always I look forward to your comments.

3 thoughts on “Solutions to Time Wastage: Ideas by Simon Doull

  1. sillypointcricket says:

    I think that changing the ball every four overs would be rather messy and potentially time consuming, unless they’re all in the umpire’s pocket. Also, how old is each ball gonna be? Are they all gonna be four overs old? I think that spinners might not like the idea.

    Is the game really that slow? We often criticise team’s for being slow but in T20 you still get the same amount of overs unlike Tests where you might lose a few for the days spectators. There are often legitimate reasons why the game has slowed down. I think that a lot of people would rather see quality even if it lasts a little longer than having some of the play rushed (And quality compromised) just to get home ten minutes earlier. If you go to see a movie, you don’t want a critical part skimmed through in ten minutes when it needed twenty!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. psoans says:

      The solution for the age of the ball can be easily overcome by having balls that are 4,8 and 16 overs old chosen by the bowling team. This will be on the umpire. Maybe umpires would wear a man pouch. I completely agree that new balls should not be used every 4 overs.
      T20’s are taking too much time. They are supposed to get over in 3.5 hours but now they regularly go past four hours. There is a big difference between time taken in Tests and T20. I don’t mind bowlers taking more time in Tests if it results in a win within five days. I completely agree that quality is better than quantity. Banning Jason Holder for the third Test against England was nonsensical. The IPL games start at 8pm. This would mean that the games end up going well past midnight. Legitimate reasons like having to go to the third umpire, ball changes because it was hit out of the ground or an injury should be discounted.
      Quality should never be compromised but lately everyone on the field seems to make a suggestion, field changes are made. Then the batsman ends up hitting it for a six anyway which wastes even more time. This again will start a think tank meeting on the field.
      I don’t think that 10 minutes will make an issue. When it starts to get close to the 30 minute mark is when the problem starts.


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