I’ve a few points that I would like to make which I feel is for the betterment of cricket. But then you are a supreme body of cricket while the actual power lies in the hands of BCCI, so I do not know whether writing this letter to you would be of any use. But still, being a cricket lover,
I’ve to make an attempt and will mark a CC to BCCI too. Following are some rules you may want to change, some are straightforward – a matter of common sense, some are a tad radical, and of course all of them are open to debate.
Fielding Restrictions – What use are they? Remove them! If it is a Sachin batting he will anyway pierce the field. If it is a Yusuf Pathan batting n-number of fielders on the boundary are not going to stop him. And if it is a Zaheer you want to see hit sixes, you should stop watching cricket and go see a mental specialist.
Edges that go for runs – Ravi Shastri, or any commentator, would say that is a mental victory for the bowler. “Bollocks” is what a bowler of English descent would say. It is frustration that the bowler feels, not a moral victory. If the runs are unintentional do not award them. I do not want to see a top-edged six. A top-edge should mean victory for bowler – he beat the batsman, a top-edge or a Chinese cut, or a French cut (the shot-name changes based on the commentator) should not mean runs for batsman. And I am not talking about the deliberate edges, the upper cut, or the late cut – in my opinion they are beautiful to watch for the split-second decision the batsman makes while playing them.
Byes, Legbyes – In a similar vein byes and legbyes should be removed. There is a reason the batsman is called a batsman – he is a man with a bat. If the ball is hitting his legs, or his helmet the batting team should not be awarded any runs.
LBW Rule – Why the intricacies? If the ball has pitched outside leg-stump, so what?! If the ball is hitting the stumps, the batsman is out, else not!
10 over per bowler – If the opening batsman can play for all 50 overs (which implies he was able to face nearly 150 balls i.e. ~25 overs), why should a bowler be restricted to just 10 overs? Allow the bowler to bowl till he falls over tired from the exertion. It can be 12 overs, it can be 15, and if Shakib-al-Hasan wants, let him bowl 25 overs after opening the bowling. You are not stopping a batsman, why stop a bowler at 10 overs?
Bouncers – And why do you hate bowlers so much? Let them bowl more bouncers, I feel at least three an over should be allowed. If a batsman cannot play a bouncing ball, he should not play cricket.
Flat Pitches – And another very important rule – if in a match, both team are able to score more than 330 (you can decide the exact figure, but I hope it is not 400 or so!) then that ground should be handed a suspension of a year or till the time the pitch is relaid – and not by the National Highway contractor. And FYI, the match where SA chased some 430 odd runs against Australia should not be called the best ODI ever. It was a match about who had the better bowling machines, not about cricket.
Associate Countries – And stop treating associate countries with disdain. Every World Cup the associate countries are emerging victorious against cricket powerhouses even without ample practice. Nurture the associate countries, give them a proper chance to play regularly against powerful opposition (I read somewhere that Canada & Kenya have played just 2 & 6 matches against proper oppositions since the 2007 World Cup) and I am sure the 2023 World Cup could be won by Ireland or Afghanistan. Wasn’t Sri Lanka an associate team in early 80s, and didn’t they win the World Cup in ’96? Hope you learn a lesson from FIFA.
CC : BCCI
(On behalf of many more cricket lovers)