Rules February 16, 2013

Time to rethink the LBW law?

Nilesh Jain
The LBW law has achieved the same place in cricket that the offside rule has in football - just watch a fan explaining either of them to someone else
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LBW. The mere mention of those three letters is guaranteed to bring a myriad of reactions from cricket fans all over the world. The LBW law has achieved the same place in cricket that the offside rule has in football - just watch a fan explaining either of them to someone else.

Over the long history of cricket, the LBW law has been altered on many occasions. What started out in 1774 as a simple attempt to keep batsmen from gaining unfair advantage by using their legs to prevent the ball from hitting the stumps has undergone so many changes in the subsequent 200+ years, that its current interpretation has drastically moved away from the dictionary definition of that phrase - which is that the leg was in front of the wicket, blocking the progress of the ball to the wicket. Back to first principles - cricket is ultimately a game between bat and ball, where the batsman should be aiming to keep the ball from hitting his stumps by using his bat alone. However the current LBW law has a number of conditions which are significantly biased against the batsman's main role of keeping the ball from hitting his wicket by using his bat. These include the requirement for the ball to have pitched in line with the wickets or on the off side, the batsman being struck in line with the stumps while attempting a shot, or the batsman possibly being struck outside the off stump while not attempting a shot. And a ball pitched outside the leg stump is a complete no-no as far as the LBW law is concerned.

I think that the LBW law needs a radical rethink leading to a very simple law - if the umpire (or indeed ball-tracking technology) believes that the ball would have gone on to hit the stumps after hitting the batsman's pads or some other part of the body, then the batsman must be given out. It must not matter whether the ball was pitched in line with the stumps or not, whether the batsman was struck in line with the stumps or not, whether the batsman was attempting a shot or not, or indeed whether the batsman had touched the ball with his bat or not. After all, imagine if the player stepped towards square leg and completely missed the ball - then the batsman would be bowled even if the ball pitched outside the line of the stumps and was possibly still outside the line of the stumps when it passed the popping crease (where it would have potentially hit the batsman).

And remember this - would Mike Gatting have been given out LBW to Shane Warne's ball of the century if it had struck him on the pads? Going by the current law, he would most certainly be given not out since the ball had pitched way outside his leg stump. But the evidence is there for all of us to see - it bowled him!

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Si on February 21, 2013, 2:08 GMT

    Good discussion. Don't agree with Batsman being given out LBW if he nicks it, but agree regardless of where it pitches, if hitting stumps should be out. Way too many restrictive rules on bowlers, yet a batsman can change from right to left after the balls bowled, dance down pitch, walk around the crease, boundaries are brought in, field restrictions, are all weighted in the batsmans' favour. It's a misnomer that spectators go to see massive scores ( and that represents good value for spectator admission). Spectators go to see their team win, simple as that; that can mean a T20 one point win with scores in 120's or 220's. It's supposed to be a contest and it's time to return to that. At least then the other half of players in the team are competing on equal terms.

  • Om on February 20, 2013, 17:16 GMT

    I entirely agree with the author, the rules whereby a batsman is declared 'not lbw' are arbitrary and anachronistic. Why can't right hand batsmen, who are allowed to play the switch hit, not be out lbw if the ball pitches outside the leg stump and would go on to hit the stumps?

    On the other hand, my father has a different view on the lbw rule. In an article, 'Abolish the LBW' (can be found on the internet) he argues that declaring a batsman out is like awarding capital punishment. Hence he argues that such a decision should be based on fact and not opinion. Since in an lbw decision since the ball still has some distance to go to hit the stumps, any decision will be speculative. Hence, he argues that instead the lbw rule should be replaced with a 10 run penalty every time the ball hits a part of the batsman's body.

    What do you guys think?

  • giri on February 19, 2013, 13:46 GMT

    ha ha ha . "Pitch any where from leg side hitting stumps - Out " . He he he, Such a rule change make it a different game not cricket. Whats the big deal ?? What changes ?? Fast bowlers , leg spinners everyone will come around the wicket and target the leg stump from pitching the ball in may be from 6th leg stump every ball. This will take away shots like leg glance,flick,sweep ( almost all leg side shorts )as this involves risk of getting out.It will make cover drive,square cuts etc impossible as the ball will never be there to be hit in such areas. Even kids who play cricket in street will know the limitations of such rule.Wonder how such blogs get published

  • Aditya on February 19, 2013, 13:17 GMT

    Hitting batsman's legs is infinitely more easy when the ball is pitched outside the leg-stump's line, because: 1) Batsman's eyes are never aligned with the line of the ball when ball comes from that angle. 2) Rough created outside leg stump will make it even more easier for spinners to spin from outside leg stump and hit batsman's pads.

    This means that bowlers will almost exclusively bowl a negative line - since it saves runs and would fetch wickets way more easily. That would make for very bad cricket.

    It seems that it is fashionable these days to come up with ideas that favour the bowler - no matter what the repercussions. And this particular idea is so bad that it can single-handedly destroy the game's beauty.

    Manjrekar suggested some changes in his latest column. And all of them are eminently sensible and worth implementing (and would favor the bowlers).

  • AB on February 19, 2013, 11:05 GMT

    In principle, I agree. Your argument is completely sound. However its simply too big a change to make in one go, the entirety of modern batting technique is built around certain assumptions about the lbw law.

  • Waseem F Ahmed on February 19, 2013, 11:02 GMT

    I am a bowler and I have always felt that the leg side rule is very unfair. First of all, who made up the notion that anything on the pads is a negative line? Surely it mustve been a batsman. What is "Negative" about it? I cant think of anything. I often want to bown into the legs from round the wicket but people tell me its negative? Negative to whom or what? I dont get it at all.

  • Umps on February 19, 2013, 10:14 GMT

    I agree with loosening the outside off rule. I was umpiring a game on Sunday - in the first over the bowler pitched a ball about a foot outside off stump, and it took the middle stump out. Over the next couple of overs the bowler bowled the identical ball a couple more times, but both were not out because they hit pads just outside off. It just seems silly when you see that. The batsman was completely beaten and would have been bowled apart from the pad. Actually, I might also have no problem with LBWs pitching outside leg so long as the ball pitched within the 'protected area' line. - this could solve the negative bowling problem.

  • Victor K on February 19, 2013, 10:14 GMT

    What a stupid article.

    I assume the author has never played cricket apart from park or gully cricket.

    The leg-stump rule is there because batsmen have a blind spot on the leg side behind the pads. If this rule came into effect, every outswing bowler in the country would be going round the wicket, starting the ball 18 inches down the legside and bringing it back to hit middle and leg - with a 4-5 or 3-6 field. Never mind the effect on spinners too! You'd essentially turn cricket into a slow-scoring, attritional, leg-side game - which is the opposite of what makes for good cricket.

  • Rakshit on February 19, 2013, 7:18 GMT

    There are 2 things.. ball pitching outside of leg stump and batsman being struck outside the off stump while attempting a shot. 2nd point in the law should be changed. If ball is going to hit the stumps and batsman is outside of off stump should not matter. But to be given out when ball is pitching outside leg stump will encourage negative bowling. if we want to do that then few other rules should be changed as well like.. maximum 4 fielders allowed in leg side etc..

  • Austin on February 19, 2013, 6:36 GMT

    The law of LBW is fine just as it is. The purpose of the rule is to discourage batsmen from using their pads and that is exactly what it is doing.

    The rules for its application are meant for consistency in decision making and to help create absolute certainty that the ball was going on to hit the stumps. It is similar to how criminal law works. You do not put a man in prison unless there is absolutely no doubt that he committed a crime. Similarly a batsman ought not to be given out if the prerequisites of LBW are not satisfied, ie pitching and hitting in line and going on to hit. Grace for those offering a shot is reasonable. And as earlier comments have said, ruling out balls pitching outside leg prevents bowlers from bowling unfairly.

    Changing LBW is unnecessary and too complicated. It will be a big mess!!!

  • Si on February 21, 2013, 2:08 GMT

    Good discussion. Don't agree with Batsman being given out LBW if he nicks it, but agree regardless of where it pitches, if hitting stumps should be out. Way too many restrictive rules on bowlers, yet a batsman can change from right to left after the balls bowled, dance down pitch, walk around the crease, boundaries are brought in, field restrictions, are all weighted in the batsmans' favour. It's a misnomer that spectators go to see massive scores ( and that represents good value for spectator admission). Spectators go to see their team win, simple as that; that can mean a T20 one point win with scores in 120's or 220's. It's supposed to be a contest and it's time to return to that. At least then the other half of players in the team are competing on equal terms.

  • Om on February 20, 2013, 17:16 GMT

    I entirely agree with the author, the rules whereby a batsman is declared 'not lbw' are arbitrary and anachronistic. Why can't right hand batsmen, who are allowed to play the switch hit, not be out lbw if the ball pitches outside the leg stump and would go on to hit the stumps?

    On the other hand, my father has a different view on the lbw rule. In an article, 'Abolish the LBW' (can be found on the internet) he argues that declaring a batsman out is like awarding capital punishment. Hence he argues that such a decision should be based on fact and not opinion. Since in an lbw decision since the ball still has some distance to go to hit the stumps, any decision will be speculative. Hence, he argues that instead the lbw rule should be replaced with a 10 run penalty every time the ball hits a part of the batsman's body.

    What do you guys think?

  • giri on February 19, 2013, 13:46 GMT

    ha ha ha . "Pitch any where from leg side hitting stumps - Out " . He he he, Such a rule change make it a different game not cricket. Whats the big deal ?? What changes ?? Fast bowlers , leg spinners everyone will come around the wicket and target the leg stump from pitching the ball in may be from 6th leg stump every ball. This will take away shots like leg glance,flick,sweep ( almost all leg side shorts )as this involves risk of getting out.It will make cover drive,square cuts etc impossible as the ball will never be there to be hit in such areas. Even kids who play cricket in street will know the limitations of such rule.Wonder how such blogs get published

  • Aditya on February 19, 2013, 13:17 GMT

    Hitting batsman's legs is infinitely more easy when the ball is pitched outside the leg-stump's line, because: 1) Batsman's eyes are never aligned with the line of the ball when ball comes from that angle. 2) Rough created outside leg stump will make it even more easier for spinners to spin from outside leg stump and hit batsman's pads.

    This means that bowlers will almost exclusively bowl a negative line - since it saves runs and would fetch wickets way more easily. That would make for very bad cricket.

    It seems that it is fashionable these days to come up with ideas that favour the bowler - no matter what the repercussions. And this particular idea is so bad that it can single-handedly destroy the game's beauty.

    Manjrekar suggested some changes in his latest column. And all of them are eminently sensible and worth implementing (and would favor the bowlers).

  • AB on February 19, 2013, 11:05 GMT

    In principle, I agree. Your argument is completely sound. However its simply too big a change to make in one go, the entirety of modern batting technique is built around certain assumptions about the lbw law.

  • Waseem F Ahmed on February 19, 2013, 11:02 GMT

    I am a bowler and I have always felt that the leg side rule is very unfair. First of all, who made up the notion that anything on the pads is a negative line? Surely it mustve been a batsman. What is "Negative" about it? I cant think of anything. I often want to bown into the legs from round the wicket but people tell me its negative? Negative to whom or what? I dont get it at all.

  • Umps on February 19, 2013, 10:14 GMT

    I agree with loosening the outside off rule. I was umpiring a game on Sunday - in the first over the bowler pitched a ball about a foot outside off stump, and it took the middle stump out. Over the next couple of overs the bowler bowled the identical ball a couple more times, but both were not out because they hit pads just outside off. It just seems silly when you see that. The batsman was completely beaten and would have been bowled apart from the pad. Actually, I might also have no problem with LBWs pitching outside leg so long as the ball pitched within the 'protected area' line. - this could solve the negative bowling problem.

  • Victor K on February 19, 2013, 10:14 GMT

    What a stupid article.

    I assume the author has never played cricket apart from park or gully cricket.

    The leg-stump rule is there because batsmen have a blind spot on the leg side behind the pads. If this rule came into effect, every outswing bowler in the country would be going round the wicket, starting the ball 18 inches down the legside and bringing it back to hit middle and leg - with a 4-5 or 3-6 field. Never mind the effect on spinners too! You'd essentially turn cricket into a slow-scoring, attritional, leg-side game - which is the opposite of what makes for good cricket.

  • Rakshit on February 19, 2013, 7:18 GMT

    There are 2 things.. ball pitching outside of leg stump and batsman being struck outside the off stump while attempting a shot. 2nd point in the law should be changed. If ball is going to hit the stumps and batsman is outside of off stump should not matter. But to be given out when ball is pitching outside leg stump will encourage negative bowling. if we want to do that then few other rules should be changed as well like.. maximum 4 fielders allowed in leg side etc..

  • Austin on February 19, 2013, 6:36 GMT

    The law of LBW is fine just as it is. The purpose of the rule is to discourage batsmen from using their pads and that is exactly what it is doing.

    The rules for its application are meant for consistency in decision making and to help create absolute certainty that the ball was going on to hit the stumps. It is similar to how criminal law works. You do not put a man in prison unless there is absolutely no doubt that he committed a crime. Similarly a batsman ought not to be given out if the prerequisites of LBW are not satisfied, ie pitching and hitting in line and going on to hit. Grace for those offering a shot is reasonable. And as earlier comments have said, ruling out balls pitching outside leg prevents bowlers from bowling unfairly.

    Changing LBW is unnecessary and too complicated. It will be a big mess!!!

  • Romanticstud on February 19, 2013, 6:35 GMT

    In the old definition of the law it was the umpires call if it was going to hit the stumps ... Now if a leg spinner turns the ball outside of the leg and it bites into the surface and hits the pad the batsman can just pad the ball away ... all day ... that leads to boring cricket ... The rule should be amended to include a leg side delivery that would hit the stumps ... like the off side delivery, where the batsman has not offered a shot ... The rule for the DRS should be altered too ... that the ball should be hitting the stumps at a reasonable height full on ... no part of the ball should be deemed to be over the side of off or leg stump and also not hitting the bails ...

  • Talal on February 19, 2013, 2:20 GMT

    I agree with the comments regarding DRS for LBW. It does not make any sense to the most of us including the playing cricketers. To the appellant, the ball should be in his favor for more than 50% of all the 3 point of interest which make up the LBW law. Why use the technology when we are not 50% sure about its accuracy. This is the most funny and ridiculous part as umpire thinking out gives all the benefits of doubt to the fielding side whereas he thinking otherwise gives the same benefits to the batsman no matter how marginal the call was. What's even worse is the fact that sides making those kind of very close calls, end up losing their chance - completely non-sense.

    I agree that the margin of doubt should be reduced from 50% to a more reasonable percentage. And I think regardless of the percentage, the appealing side should not lose their chance if the appeal turns out to be genuine one, even if it doesn't change the decision.

  • longmemory on February 19, 2013, 0:48 GMT

    I've often thought along these lines myself, and having watched the pendulum swing so much in favor of batsmen lately, I think its time to take such an idea seriously. As for all those of you who think matches are going to end very fast as a result, do you seriously think 5 day test matches are practical in this day and age? Try explaining to anyone that about a third of test matches end in a draw after 5 days of play and they'll (quite rightly) think you are nuts. There can be rules against leg-stump attacks (like we have against bodyline type attacks now) and negative lines - that's easy to legislate. And if batsmen - with all the innovations in their favor like restrictions on bouncers, use of helmets, size of bats and other equipment etc etc - cannot find a way to score against balls using the leg stump line, maybe they should switch to some other sport. This could seriously reinvent the legspinner - and is worth considering.

  • nicholas on February 18, 2013, 18:48 GMT

    One minor correction: it was 1957 (v west Indies) not 1954, when May and Cowdrey padded up so much in their huge partnership. [And one point that seems to have been missed altogether is this: the umpire was (and frequently still is) unable to see the wickets when a ball pitching outside leg stump struck the batsman's body en route towards the wickets. Hence the original reason for the "not out if pitching outside leg-stump" rule.

  • Karthik on February 18, 2013, 16:57 GMT

    After going through the posts above, I like the variant proposed by Mahesh above i.e. leave the outside leg stump as it is but rethink the rule for balls pitched outside off.

  • suresh on February 18, 2013, 13:31 GMT

    to prevent batsman playing negative shots using legs against legspin, batsmen should be given out if he plays two successive negative shots against spin.

  • Vanchy on February 18, 2013, 11:15 GMT

    Balls pitching outside leg stump pitch in a blind spot for the batsman. That is the rationale of the LBW not being given for balls pitching outside leg stump. The other arguments are quite valid, I don't see a reason why a LBW cannot be given even if the ball is striking the batsman outside the line of the stumps - the issue being as long as there is an element of certainty if the ball striking the stumps. LBW are certainly judgement calls and probabilistic judgement at that of the balls trajectory and movement. I think the rules should be simplified - simple and straight. Good Simple argument for a simple issue by the author.

  • Walter on February 18, 2013, 9:40 GMT

    Completely agree. MCC made the rules and after they were destroyed by WI Valentine and Ramadin in 1950 when Wi beat England at Lords. In 1954 P. May and C. Cowdery learned to use their pads more than their bat to play leg spin....very negative batting, to the point of damaging to the spirit of the game. So, let's not talk about negative bowling when bowlers pitch outside leg stump. I actually bowl around the wicket pitching outside leg stump to ATTACK the batsman's stumps. I find I can bowl all day pitching middle-off and swinging away - no one will ever score. That for me is very negative bowling. A good batsman can ...should...be able to bat anywher, no? Why are we shielding him/them from attacking bowlers.

    England invented the rule and give these things names and labels. Time for a rethink.

    Thanks for the article.

  • umar on February 18, 2013, 8:09 GMT

    I really like this article, not for just its contents but also because of the subject. We have articles about players and performance, but less articles on rules, umpires, eliminating bad decisions, and those that question authority. But they are no less important. Simplifying rules is a step in the right direction. Also, I have this suggestion:

    - if there is doubt on whether the ball has touched the ropes, the crew makes every effort to find out exactly what has happened, and then runs are awarded on merit, not on umpire's original call - if there is doubt on whether a batsman is out caught, or run out, then we say benefit of doubt to batsman, not umpire's call. - similarly, i propose that if there is any doubt on lbw decision, it should be either benefit of doubt to batsman, or to bowler, or something more suitable than umpire's call.

  • Anshu N Jain on February 18, 2013, 5:32 GMT

    When the LBW law talks about where the ball pitches, it makes eminent sense, in that the span of vision of a right handed batsman roughly covers the 11 to 2 arc on a clock (with 12 being the stumps at the non-striker end). You simply cannot wish away this bio-mechanical (eyes coupled with stance) fact when you call for making where the ball pitches irrelevant when it comes to judging LBWs.

    I strongly advocate doing away with Leg Byes in all formats of the game. The batting team ought to be credited with runs either made off the bats of its batsmen, or because of the bowlers' errors (wides, no balls) or fielders' errors (byes, overthrows). Why leave any chance for penalising the fielding team for the bowler evading the batsman's bat?

    Further, I see no reason for the LBW to exist in the limited overs format. Coupled with doing away with Leg Byes, it means that no runs can be scored off those balls which dont hit the bat.

    In Tests, the law is just fine as it is at the moment.

  • hnmirza on February 18, 2013, 5:28 GMT

    Would create havoc. Even neutral umpires would be accused of bias in every decision since all would rest on their opinion of where the ball is ending up. Negative bowling would become the norm. It would be impossible to determine ball direction following an inside edge on to the pads. I think things are fine currently, esp as people are learning how to utilise current technology. They just need to devise a consistent method of use of the third umpire input. Interesting thoughts though.

  • cricketlover on February 18, 2013, 3:35 GMT

    reason for pitched outside of leg stump rule was simply to prevent bowlers going around the wicket and aiming at leg stump! batsmen will miss a ball pitched outside leg stump more easil than one pitched in line. a bit like body line series which brought in the law of 2 behind square to prevent captains stacking up leg side and bowl short pitch.

    if these lbw laws weren't in place then there wouldbe 8/10 LBW dismissals! and warne did not once bowl that delivery again in his career!

  • Nathan on February 18, 2013, 3:30 GMT

    Call me naive, perhaps, but wouldn't this rule mean that batsmen will need to change their guard from the usual middle-leg to outside leg, thereby opening the stumps to full view, but enabling them to take the spinning ball and punch it through the covers?

    Or am I missing something in all the knee-jerk talk of "negative bowling"?

  • Anonymous on February 18, 2013, 0:59 GMT

    This law harks back to the old days when it was considered 'not cricket' to hit the ball on the leg side. It is unfair on the leg-spinner who has the bowl in line with the leg stump, whereas the off spinner can bowl 6 to 8 inches outside the off-stump and still claim an lbw.

  • tonyp on February 17, 2013, 22:50 GMT

    Changing the LBW law as suggested would destroy cricket as a spectacle.

    Bowling wide of leg stump has in fact been banned as a tactic because it's difficult to safely score off and it kills the game. So let's make it vastly more likely to take wickets. It will still not be easy or safe to score off. It'll just be more terrifying for the batsman and dull as dishwater to watch. Yay!

    The idea of letting inside edges still be LBW is quite simply farcical, umpires have enough trouble gauging the trajectory of the ball without allowing massive changes in angle instants before it passes the stumps.

    The ball of the century argument is pure hokum, here is this miraculous memorable moment, let's change the rules so that balls like this take wickets more often and an event that is special becomes commonplace. Great idea.

  • David Meyer on February 17, 2013, 21:10 GMT

    The LBW law is a mess. It is time that we reverted to the basic question of whether the ball would have hit the stumps had it not been blocked by the batsman's body ("legs").

    Whether or not a batsman has played a shot at the ball has no bearing on whether it is on track to hit the stumps.

    Likewise the leg-side rule is ludicrous.

    Now that we have the technology to track the ball, we should revert to the basic question pure and simple.

  • Swen on February 17, 2013, 20:53 GMT

    The article misses the point that the purpose of the batsman is to make runs and not just to save his wicket. And for making runs, the ball needs to delivered in a positive way, bowling by targetting the line outside the legstump is negative approach because for the most part, it makes it very very hard if not impossible to score runs.

    Having said that, I think the outside leg stump law is completely justified. The ball has to pitch either in-line or on the off side. The only think which always bothered me and I have never been able to understand the reasoning behind, is the impact law that it has to be in-line, so I think that part should be completely eliminated.

    The DRS review of LBW is a joke, I don't understand why to use technology when chances for the appealer are so slim. All the three touch-points, has to be more than 50% in the favor of appealer which is completely unfair. That number should be reduced to a max of 20%

  • Danish on February 17, 2013, 20:38 GMT

    A lot of people are going on and on about "negative" bowling line. If we declare everything outside leg that passes behind the batsman as wide then there is no cencept of negative line anymore. If then batsman misses something that is going to hit stumps it should be out lbw. Simple and fair to both batsman and bowler. LBW law such as this will make the game much more evenly balanced and fun to watch.

  • Someone on February 17, 2013, 19:05 GMT

    How about we retain just the "pitched outside leg" part, but remove the "point of impact" and "shot offered" parts of the law? In short, if the ball is pitched in line with the stumps or outside off-stump, would have hit the stumps but was blocked by the batsman's body, it is out. Offering a shot is not a virtue, there's no reason why that should protect a batsman. If the ball swings or spins from way outside the off-stump to hit his pads, the batsman should be given out because he should have stopped it with his bat.

  • ElBeeDubya on February 17, 2013, 16:44 GMT

    Another reason for avoiding bat first then pad LBWs is that neither the tracking technology nor the umpires will make a fair amount if mistakes since the deflection path would be too short to make the correct judgment. Also, leg side bowling does not create blind spots. The typical cricket stance as it stands now has evolved to be so because a batsman does not need to worry much about hitting balls that pitch outside the leg. When rules are changed, the batsmen would need to adjust their stance and play accordingly so that there won't be any blind spots.

  • Lourens Grobbelaar on February 17, 2013, 16:30 GMT

    @Nilesh Jain Sorry for my earlier strong words. I do not agree with your stand at all and do believe it would lead to negative bowling from bowlers from the onside as a blindspot. I do feel though that I expressed myself in an unacceptable way.

  • ElBeeDubya on February 17, 2013, 16:28 GMT

    Thanks for writing about ME. I agree with almost everything. Giving the batsman an unfair advantage by allowing him to block the ball with his pads should not be allowed regardless of where the ball pitches or hits the pad indeed. It is elementary my dear Shane, as Sherlock would have said. The only thing with which I qualms is the bat and pad LBWs. In such cases, the batsman wasn't trying to block the ball from hitting the stumps. While the batsman did not play the perfect shot, at least the fact that the ball hit the bat first suggests that no purposeful padding up is being performed by the batsmen (as they frequently do to block balls pitched outside the off stump while acting as if they were playing a shot - It is like the fake falls in soccer, an UGLY aspect of the game.) Padding up to balls is one of the BORING thing that makes Test cricket ugly. If you get rid of it, Test cricket would become much improved since the batsmen will be forced to use their bats much more often!

  • Ram Nanduri on February 17, 2013, 16:01 GMT

    Now that we've got ample technology disposal at our hand, ICC should pull the stats of all the "Bowled" wickets and determine which balls have hit the wickets, their occurrence percentage, and determine the role.

    I agree with the author saying that, if the ball touches pad even after touching bat, should be given out, as long as it hits pad in front of wicket.

    But, who is to determine how much the ball spins, swings, or turns, for those balls that pitch outside the stumps - because, this depends on various factors, pitch, bowler's ability, moisture in air - where there is no quantifiable scale for any of these factors. The batsman should be given out only when struck in front of wickets, not away from wickets.

  • Aniruddha on February 17, 2013, 15:24 GMT

    Completely agree..Nice article..Cricket is TOTALLY a batsmen's game -_-

  • JLE on February 17, 2013, 12:41 GMT

    I would suggest the following rules for LBW:

    (1) Was it going to hit the stumps? If NO, then Not Out. (2) Did it hit bat before pad? If YES, then Not Out. (3) Did it pitch outside the batsman's leg stump, *having been delivered by a bowler who bowled from the batsman's leg side* (i.e. RH bowler over the wicket to LH batsman, or around the wicket to RH batsman: LH bowler vice versa)? If YES, then Not Out.

    Otherwise, OUT.

    This would reward a good spin bowler by allowing, say, a right-arm LBG to bowl OVER the wicket (from the RH batsman's off side), pitch outside leg stump and bring the ball back to hit the stumps. Or, indeed, for a SLA to do the same from ROUND the wicket. (Or, indeed, a fast bowler capable of great swing and seam movement - right-arm over, or left-arm around.)

    While at the same time, discouraging the negative tactics of a LBG bowling around the wicket outside leg, or the same from a SLA bowling over the wicket and packing the legside field.

  • mark on February 17, 2013, 11:19 GMT

    At the end of the day the simple fact remains,if the batsman plays the ball with the bat like he is supposed to how the lbw law is implemented is irrelevant,all the padding up to the ball pitching outside leg stump for over after over is boring in the extreme so lets make batsmen play the ball with the bat not the pad,after all thats the point of the game surely??

  • Craig on February 17, 2013, 11:17 GMT

    I'm a left arm spinner and doing this would help my kind incredibly, but I think it is hugely unwise. It might make sense in matches where there is ball tracking technology, but what of all those thousands of matches where kids, clubs and even 1st class don't have that ability. Apart from ball tracking, an umpire has no way of certainly dealing with balls pitching outside leg. This would make cricket a totally different game as bowlers consistently attack from the leg side .

  • Zimmy on February 17, 2013, 11:10 GMT

    Why change anything. Recently, you have seen sides like Australia, New Zealand and now Pakistan, bowled out for 47, 54 and 49 respectively in a Test match. What would the scores have been if this change in L.B.W law was pushed through. Geniunely good bowling attacks will restrict batsmen in any conditions. Change the laws and you may as well do away with all the coaching staff and and have one selector with a large pool of names chucked in a hat. With this kind of law change, anyone could bowl and would more than likely be able to take wickets.

  • cmis on February 17, 2013, 10:56 GMT

    I am usually all for redressing the balance in favour of the bowlers, but this seems a bit much. The ball pitching outside the leg stump is hard to see for the batsman, especially when its looping and spitting when bowled by a legspinner, it dips beneath sight. It would be downright unfair if the batsman, who is often one miscalculation away from the pavillion, is expected to blindly poke at each ball pitching outside leg. There is slightly more merit in calling for the law of the ball hitting in line with the stumps being abolished, but then you would have to depend greatly on the judgement of the umpire and/or the ball tracking technology especially in the case of huge spinning off breaks.In short, it aint broke, why fix it?

  • Aslam on February 17, 2013, 10:43 GMT

    Excellent,I agree with Nilesh to do away with undue advantage to the batsman. It will test the quality of the batsman to use his/her bat rather than pads. But only the batsman would be given out when he/she does not touch the ball with the bat before it hits the pads or body.

  • Shiv on February 17, 2013, 9:58 GMT

    Utter nonsense... please read up on the history of the lbw law before writing ridiculous simplistic articles... and also read up on the history of cricket while you are at it.

  • Ray Ford on February 17, 2013, 9:57 GMT

    Couldn't agree more. Too many balls these days destined to uproot middle stump are deemed not good enough, only because they pitched fractionally outside the line. Time to give bowlers more of a chance, and slow the pace of those too eager to join the 10,000 run-club.

  • Harmony_not _Discord on February 17, 2013, 9:25 GMT

    A much better idea is to leave LBW decisions entirely to ball-tracking technology and keep inconsistent umpiring completely out of it. Even if the technology here is somewhat faulty, the fault would at least be consistent.

  • Srini on February 17, 2013, 9:24 GMT

    I guess, negative bowling is a strong argument against outside leg pitching LBWs..how ever, most of the other stuff should be changed..batsmen offering a shot is no excuse...even edges are no excuses for not giving LBS - but for edges, like some one pointed out..technology needs to be much sharper - with it panting to make error free decisions right now, I don't see this happen anytome soon

  • SOLY SHAH on February 17, 2013, 8:09 GMT

    Well good recovery from south africa but the game is still on. Well wishes for South Africa. Soly Pakistan

  • Waheed on February 17, 2013, 7:49 GMT

    This article seems to have been written by a person who has never actually played cricket before. There are specific reasons for each of the criteria needed in an LBW decision.

    If the LBW decision is simplified to what the writer is suggesting, we'll see scores reduced very dramatically. It would fundementally change the nature of the game. I don't agree with what he is suggesting at all!

  • PK on February 17, 2013, 7:35 GMT

    OK, let's allow LBWs where the ball pitches outside leg stump. Let's also assume that Mike Gatting padded up to the ball of the century. What umpire in the world would give that out? Do we really want to watch some massive leg tweaker bowling all day around the wicket, trying to get outside a batsman's legs (where the bat doesn't reach, by the way) trying to hit his pads?

  • Arun on February 17, 2013, 7:34 GMT

    The not out for balls pitched outside the leg stump rule is quite justified as the the legs come in the way and it is not easy to get your bat to the ball by taking away your leg. There has been a lot of thought in framing the LBW law and a simplistic solution is not necessarily the answer. since DRS a lot of poor LBW decisions both in favor and against the batsman have been corrected. The current effort to improve decision making is evolving in the right direction

  • jami on February 17, 2013, 7:21 GMT

    I agree with a part of article that if ball is on off stump or outside off trying to play a short or trying to pad should not matter but if someone is saying that we should give batsmen out if the ball is pitched outside leg then god help batsmen they are gonna fall like pack of cards to leg spinners going round and left arm quick's. i want to add one more point regarding ball tracking that is if umpire gives a batsman out or notout and the ball is hitting top of the bail or is shaving the leg stump then original decision is held up well that's kind of stupid if you trust ball tracking to rectify error then wether its hitting half or full leg stump should not matter its out. especially in test matches the game is already so much tilted towards batsmen

  • jami on February 17, 2013, 7:21 GMT

    I agree with a part of article that if ball is on off stump or outside off trying to play a short or trying to pad should not matter but if someone is saying that we should give batsmen out if the ball is pitched outside leg then god help batsmen they are gonna fall like pack of cards to leg spinners going round and left arm quick's. i want to add one more point regarding ball tracking that is if umpire gives a batsman out or notout and the ball is hitting top of the bail or is shaving the leg stump then original decision is held up well that's kind of stupid if you trust ball tracking to rectify error then wether its hitting half or full leg stump should not matter its out. especially in test matches the game is already so much tilted towards batsmen

  • Nisar Ahmed on February 17, 2013, 6:32 GMT

    I strongly oppose this childish suggestion. First of rules are rules and changing them just for the sake of simplicity is not an argument. We need to look at the broader negative impacts it will make after the change. It will first prompt all the bowlers to bowl negatively specially because right arm leg spinner coming from around the wicket to right handed batsman; always chance of a wicket and no chance of Batsman can punish the bowler. Is this fair??? BTW, 200+ years of experience and thinking has yielded the current rules which included 1000s of scenarios to be considered. You are trying to say in other words that all those guys involved in the process, were stupid!!

  • Rohan Perera on February 17, 2013, 5:40 GMT

    I completely agree. In any game , the balance should be there and in cricket it is far too heavy towards bat.

  • Saud on February 17, 2013, 5:32 GMT

    If you put those rule changes in .. 50 might be a high scoring game. The rules are fine, attempts to "fix" them are not , most changes to he rules recently have been bad.

  • qurbani on February 17, 2013, 5:29 GMT

    Are you for two-day test matches?

  • Athar Sherwani on February 17, 2013, 5:28 GMT

    If your suggestions were taken on board then the Test matches would not last beyond 3 days at most with the bowling sides packing the legside. No , instead we should consider altering the current DRS 50% or more stump strike proviso when umpire decision is challenged to 25%. Bowlers then will not feel being unfairly treated. We should not alter rules relating to being struck in line with stumps.

  • ben on February 17, 2013, 4:49 GMT

    I cant believe this saw print

  • Nauman on February 17, 2013, 3:19 GMT

    Simplifying the LBW to your way will encourage negative bowling (pitching outside leg) and making it even more challenging for umpires.Your example of batsman walking towards square leg and getting bowled is very extreme,very infrequent(almost non-existent in test cricket).The "Ball of century",well the name suggests its a rare occurrence. I agree though that inside edges rule needs rethinking.If ball is still going to hit the stumps after the edge then it must be given out(b/c if there was no leg then you are getting bowled).Keep rest of rules as is,b/c current rules encourage wicket-taking line. I would also suggest an improvement to DRS, where a team should not lose a review on decisions too close,but not enough to overturn on field umpire.ICC should devise a system of 2 free unsuccessful reviews,then unlimited unsuccessful review with a penalty like 20 runs for unsuccessful review against (or by) a top-6 batsmen,10 runs otherwise.The more DRS is used, the more it will get refined.

  • Prasad on February 17, 2013, 3:09 GMT

    Agreed, but get the tracking technology fool-proof then.

  • Samuel on February 17, 2013, 2:16 GMT

    But Nilesh, that would be a change in favor the bowlers and that would mean lower scores, and we can't have that!

    Seriously, this is a simple solution, and perhaps it's about time the balance between bat and ball shifted a little bit toward the ball.

  • aznfratboy1 on February 17, 2013, 2:14 GMT

    "...or indeed whether the batsman had touched the ball with his bat or not."

    SO the theory then goes that if you inside edge the ball into your pads, the decision should still be an "Out"?

  • manzar sohail on February 17, 2013, 2:13 GMT

    In cricket bowlers are always discouraged to bowl on the legs or on the leg side of the batsman. It is exactly the same reason why LBW cannot be given when ball is pitched outside the leg stump. So this can not be changed. If the ball hits the bat first and then hits the pad that means batsman made a genuine attempt to play the ball. After hitting the bat ball usually changes the direction also which will make things more complicated for the umpires and technology. The only change which can be made is that if ball is hitting outside the off stump he still should be given out but in my opinion the present law is quite good and there is no need to change. At last it is the result of 200 years evolution.

  • Yogesh D on February 17, 2013, 2:09 GMT

    Nilesh, your proposal for a clear, simple LBW rule is so straightforward and logical that it is the equivalent of the little boy crying out, "But the emperor has no clothes!" in that story. Why have the administrators of the game not thought of this, or implemented it?

    Of course, with the controversy over DRS and ball-tracking, imagine the controversy if the batsman is given out to a ball similar to Shane Warne's ball of the century because the umpire genuinely believed it would have gone on to hit the stumps!

  • Softncool on February 17, 2013, 2:06 GMT

    Definitely if it is going to hit the stumps, it is out. But unfortunately game is mostly biased in batsman's favour. This should be stopped. There should be even contest between bat and ball.

  • Khan Afaq on February 17, 2013, 1:14 GMT

    Now technology is available to see that if the ball is hitting the stumps or not? Its very simple, if the ball is going to hit the stumps, no matter where it lands on the pitch, this should be given out. Ifs and nots are not serving cricket in a good way. Batsmen already have a lot of advantages in cricket. Give some reliefe to bowlers also.

  • Khan Afaq on February 17, 2013, 1:14 GMT

    Now technology is available to see that if the ball is hitting the stumps or not? Its very simple, if the ball is going to hit the stumps, no matter where it lands on the pitch, this should be given out. Ifs and nots are not serving cricket in a good way. Batsmen already have a lot of advantages in cricket. Give some reliefe to bowlers also.

  • mdoc73 on February 17, 2013, 1:00 GMT

    Will not work....not at all...there is a reason that the law has been amended so many times...if u change the law the way it has been described above, quality bowling sides will get teams out under 100 almost each time...forget shane warne, any leg break bowler will have a field day agaist the best batting unit....u should try it against a school level left arm seamer or legy...i doubt that one can survive more than a few overs...with due respect, bad idea...

  • Dave on February 17, 2013, 0:11 GMT

    Interesting thought Nilesh...but...If the LBW rule was changed to your rule batting averages and team totals would drop sharply! Therefore Tests, ODI's and even T20's would not last anywhere near as long in terms of time. TV companies wouldn't like that... I think the LBW law is fine as it is.

  • Jehangir Iqbal on February 17, 2013, 0:00 GMT

    Yes, but if the ball is struck on pad and bat is behind the batsman should be given not out because the ball will hit the bat, not wickets. Under current law its out. ( unfair for batsman )

  • Harmony_not_Discord on February 16, 2013, 23:56 GMT

    “If the umpire believes that the ball would have gone on to hit the stumps after hitting the batsman’s pads or some other part of the body, then the batsman must be given out”.

    Are you kidding! It’s not only radical but also controversial. As in this match umpires like Steve Davis would tend not to give LBW decisions against players of certain team.

    However it’s not a bad idea to leave LBW decisions entirely to ball-tracking technology and keep inconsistent umpiring completely out of it. Even if the technology here is faulty, the fault would at least be consistent.

  • Nahim on February 16, 2013, 23:51 GMT

    Disallowing the lbw for balls pitching outside leg-stump has a very sound rationale, for without that rule spinners would pitch the ball outside leg all day long and not go for any runs. I do agree that there should be no off-stump restrictions on lbw. Any ball outside off can and should be handled with the bat, and if you use the pad you should become a candidate for lbw.

  • Angus Swanson on February 16, 2013, 23:48 GMT

    Presumably you could use a similar argument based on 'ball-tracking technology' to justify giving a batsman out where a run-out was prevented by the ball hitting him as he tries to 'get home'??

  • Nilesh on February 16, 2013, 23:45 GMT

    If the ball is pitched outside leg-stump it is considered as a blind spot therefore it's unfair to give LBW when it's pitched outside leg stump.

  • Luke Jackson on February 16, 2013, 23:43 GMT

    We don't need more sitting around and waiting for the third umpire to push a button. The DRS has allready sucked the soul out of cricket.Cricket used to be a test of character and showed who had class and grace in the way they handled bad decisions.The LBW rule is now way over used. A batsman should never be given out LBW on the front foot, the bowler has not done enougth to earn the wicket. I wonder what percentage of LBW as a form of dismissal is now compared to before DRS. As far as the rule goes it should stay as it is, being given out to a ball pitching outside leg is just not cricket.

  • Qasimzia on February 16, 2013, 23:35 GMT

    Very weak argument indeed.

  • Bulldog on February 16, 2013, 23:31 GMT

    100% agree. The hours I have wasted trying to explain the LBW law to various girlfriends over the years.

  • Sumati on February 16, 2013, 23:27 GMT

    Then you can keep watching bowlers bowling negative lines two feet outside the leg stump all day long!!!

    This article does not make much sense at all

  • Waqar on February 16, 2013, 22:35 GMT

    Finally someone who echoes my thoughts on LBW. Thank you Nilesh!

  • Stephen f on February 16, 2013, 22:23 GMT

    To quote: "or indeed whether the batsman had touched the ball with his bat or not"

    I take it you have not played cricket, and you are just a cricket writer?

  • Baz on February 16, 2013, 21:51 GMT

    Some good points i think if it's coming from the offside it shouldn't matter where it hits as long as it's hitting the stumps. I never understood why playing a shot matters. I think the most frustrating part is watching a turning spinner and batsmen padding it away it cause they can get outside the line however the prediction software i'm not sure how good it is with the balls turning out of the rough

  • Mark on February 16, 2013, 21:11 GMT

    What a load of rubbish. How do you propose that batsmen play the deliveries pitched far down the leg side and hit the pad, going on to hit the stumps. A batsman can freely extend his arms towards the off side simply because his body is facing in that direction and a human being can naturally extend his arms more in front of his body than behind his body. This does not apply to the leg side, where the batsman's back is facing the point where the delivery was pitched. You gave Shane Warne's example. Just imaging that the ball had pitched further down the leg side and with the same amount of spin was going on to hit the top of leg stump. As per your view even that should be given out. What you are asking is like seeing what's happening behind your back....You need to remember one thing..In a test match there are a possible 2200 deliveries but only 40 wickets.

  • andrew schulz on February 16, 2013, 20:51 GMT

    The reason a batsman can't be given out lbw after hitting the ball is that it is impossible for an umpire to judge the path of the ball after such a deflection. To change that rule would be ludicrous. We certainly could not trust hawk eye technology to rule on whether a ball would have hit the stumps after such a late change in its path.

  • Floorwalker007 on February 16, 2013, 20:38 GMT

    Allowing lbw for balls pitching outside leg stump would open the door for a lot of negative bowling, considering the generous space a test bowler has down leg.

    Take for instance Steyn who is great at swinging the ball away. He would most definitely come around and proceed to bowl a poor line down leg waiting for one to swing in towards the stumps for an lbw. Any batsmen would know that a ball like that is really hard to play and with the swing it will hit your pads half the time, because face it your legs are in the way of getting your bat to the ball. Also, you are then unable to score off those that go straight. Very negative cricket obviously. The same goes for leg spin. A negative line of bowling would develop.

  • Vishal on February 16, 2013, 20:29 GMT

    I agree that ball pitching on any part of the pitch can be irrelevant, or similarly offering a shot or not, or ball hitting the pad outside off or leg can be irrelevant but if bat is involved batsman should never be judged LBW.

  • Osama Siddiqui on February 16, 2013, 20:13 GMT

    I dont know that the LBW law needs as radical an overhaul as you suggest, particularly with regards to the ball pitching outside leg, as allowing that can give rise to a lot of negative spin bowling in Test cricket. One rule I would like to see changed with regards to LBWs is the Umpire's call in DRS. If the ball is hitting the stumps, it should be out, the amount of the ball hitting the stumps should be irrelevant. For context for an outside edge the amount of the ball that hits the bat is irrelevant. If there's even a flicker on HotSpot on the bat that disappears in an instant, it's still given out. So why the difference for an LBW?

  • Alamdar Shah on February 16, 2013, 20:10 GMT

    You do realise that if a batsman has to play at deliveries pitching outside leg stump he will have to play around his pad and if you play across your pad your will definately miss quite a few, hence balls pitching outside leg are a no-no. If the law were to be amended a bowler would simply attack the legs from the suitable angel and eventually get the batsman out.

  • McGorium on February 16, 2013, 19:45 GMT

    The obvious issue with this proposed amendment to the law is one that's been known (possibly) since the law itself was established: negative bowling. Bowlers who pitch the ball a foot outside leg and packing a leg-side field to frustrate the batsman, and bore spectators (think Ashley Giles). There has to be a deterrent to that tactic. The offside portion of the law has been relaxed over time. In Bradman's time, you couldn't be out LBW if the ball wasn't pitched within the stumps. Over time, umps began giving LBW decisions if a shot wasn't offered even if the ball pitched outside off. With the advent of ball-tracking, it appears that umps are more likely to give a batsman out LBW while offering a shot even if pitched/struck outside off. The leg side portion of it, though, remains for a good reason (stated above). As far as Gatting was concerned, he played back to a ball he should've been forward to (and credit to Warnie for inducing it). Had he done that, he'd probably have defended it.

  • HM on February 16, 2013, 19:42 GMT

    This is actually a brilliant idea. I'm pretty sure the rules were initially amended since it was so difficult to determine whether the ball would go on to hit the stumps. Since the introduction of TV cameras and now ball-tracking technology, it's time to revisit the LBW rule.

  • Laeeq Ahmed on February 16, 2013, 19:24 GMT

    I agree with you on most of them. But one case where ball hits the pad after hitting the bat is very difficult to judge by on field umpire. The ball takes different angles when it comes after hitting the bat. We are still having issues with DRS and spot technology. Maybe in the future when we have the correct technology, then ICC can look into this.

  • Irtiza on February 16, 2013, 19:16 GMT

    The law is fine, it means bowlers are more skillful today. If we go by what you suggest the most clumsiest of all bowlers would claim LBW on every other delivery. Shoaib Akhtar would beat the bat ALL the time with his pace and each time it would hit the batsman's body - and mind you he broke quite a few toes in his career - it would be deemed out.

  • Asif Khan on February 16, 2013, 19:12 GMT

    A very very interesting read indeed.. I tend to agree with most of the points. The bit I loved is the question about Mike Getting and the ball of the century .. well well very tricky indeed.. He would not have been given OUT for sure.. Serious thinking process needed to make it better.. I would go with the conventional way. First the umpire should be given charge with meaningful changes to the laws, also no need of the DRS I believe.

  • Adrian on February 16, 2013, 18:55 GMT

    Fair comment! Would certainly make things easier for all not least new fans to the game which is clearly needed. Evens up the bias towards batters back to the bowlers also. I like!

  • ashar on February 16, 2013, 18:49 GMT

    Nice thoughts, but don't think they can be applied here.

    Leg before wicket, as it is defined right now looks like one of the finest research to find out whether the batsman used his legs/body deliberately/or not to avoid the ball hitting the stumps. ( There certainly are a few exceptions anyway to the deliberate act). Another thing to consider here is whether the ball deserved a wicket, imagine a bowler bowling a negative line through out the day,he'd be the most successful bowler in such a world.

    In a nut shell its about finding out whether the batsman has really flawed some where for a delivery and whether the bowler had really intended to get the batsman out without bowling a negative line.

    And remember that LBW is just like a hawk eye decision in terms of "what might have happened had it not been for the batsman's body".

    Only if all the decisions were made correct we would never have had any discrepancies/controversies.But than who wants to live in a perfect world :-)

    Cheers

  • ishnyc on February 16, 2013, 18:38 GMT

    I totally with this, in terms of the ball hitting the stumps, regardless of where it pitched

  • Imran Khan on February 16, 2013, 18:37 GMT

    Ridiculous proposition. You clearly haven't thought this through. The pitching outside leg stump rule was introduced to stop those spinners who would go around the wicket and fire it in at leg stump. As for your suggestion to get rid of the rule that says you can't be out if you hit it, batsmen will no longer be able to stop the ball when it starts rolling towards the stumps then? In any case, this 'radical rethink' will only increase the uncertainty in the minds of the umpires.

  • Doug on February 16, 2013, 18:27 GMT

    Yes, as to that ball of the century, the "evidence" is beside the point. The reason for the current law is not that it's difficult to tell whether a ball pitched outside leg would have hit the stumps. It's that we would like bowlers to have to work a little harder than just pitch everything into the rough outside leg stump and wait for the pitch to do the work. The brilliance of Warne's delivery wasn't that he could pitch outside leg and make the ball do enough to hit the stumps; any journeyman left-armer could bowl over the wicket and do the same, and if your proposal was adopted then that's what we'd be seeing a lot of. The point about Warne was that he could make the ball do enough from two or three feet off the stumps, where the batsman was convinced it was going to miss - or, in extreme cases, get the ball past both bat and pad.

    Maybe watching six hours of legside filth is your idea of cricket heaven, but I think you'll have a little work to do convincing everyone else.

  • Waqas Saleem on February 16, 2013, 18:18 GMT

    I think the rule is pretty much fine. Allowing bowlers to get an LBW for balls pitching outside leg stump will induce further negativity particularly in test match cricket. It would be like a lottery for right arm leg spinners and orthadox left arm spinners as they would keep bowling on the rough, outside leg, without worrying get hit for too many runs and still getting a lbw whenever the batsman misses. Its a lovely sight seeing a left arm swing bowler bring the ball back in to the right handers and vice versa.

  • lionel mallach on February 16, 2013, 18:14 GMT

    i have made this same suggestion to cricket authorities....if the ball is going on to hit the stumps the batsman is out LBW .......i never received any response

  • Jayan on February 16, 2013, 18:12 GMT

    Totally agree. The LBW law has too many ifs and buts for an otherwise simple game between bat and ball. Eradicate all the conditions and make it easier on the umpires to adjudicate LBWs. The only condition to check is if the ball was going to hit the stumps irrespective of where it pitched or if the batsman was offering a shot. This would give some encouragement to the bowlers too in this batsman dominated game...

  • pakistanftw on February 16, 2013, 18:04 GMT

    seriously i hate this rule of pitching

  • UzY on February 16, 2013, 18:00 GMT

    I agree with the idea of simplifying the laws in regards of LBW, but in recent past a lot of new rules are placed in the game of cricket which ultimately leads to a lot of confusion. Some of these rules are the free hit for a no-ball (Over stepping), the power plays, the DRS technology (which is at the moment the most confusing), plus other rules such as the super sub(discarded), bowl out in case of a tie in a t20 game (PAK vs IND final t20 WC 2007-also discarded). The point is there should be one major revamp and then the addition and subtraction from the game needs to stop. If it doesn't then the next major change would be the on field umpires being replaced by programmed robots.

  • Harris on February 16, 2013, 17:59 GMT

    An extremely poor analysis of the LBW law. If all that was required to get the batsmen LBW was for the ball hitting the stump no matter where it pitched or where it hit him, then the game of cricket which is already deemed boring would be more so. Fast bowlers would have leg side fields in test cricket and bowl around the wicket, spinners would keep pitching the ball outside leg stump and trying to turn it into the stumps taking out several strokes... Overall it would be very boring! I think the law is almost fine, just some minor tweaks needed in terms of batsmen plaing a shot or not etc..

  • Anonymous on February 16, 2013, 17:57 GMT

    ball hits stump batter is out. batter gets to keep ball away from stumps by any which way he can. how about that? now, the game is not only to keep the ball hitting stumps but also to score runs and take game ahead. so the idea of the law is to give the batter a fair chance to score runs and keep the game moving forward. in effect if you let the bowler bowl a negative line by not letting the batter score then you not only kill the game but also the paying public.

  • Mattias Wieland on February 16, 2013, 17:47 GMT

    I agree almost completely. The only problem is that if you give lbw's after inside edges off the bat, it is extremely difficult to tell whether the ball would have still gone on to hit the stumps, at least in some cases. How strong was the deflection? I think even DRS would be highly inaccurate in predicting that.. Another rule change is needed around the DRS. First, more challenges allowed, 3 per innings per team in ODI's and 3 per day per team in tests. Second, the margin by which the ball needs to hit the stumps or hit in line should be the same regardless of the umpires decision. What can happen if the second change does not happen we saw with Kallis the other day. Kallis was given out caught bat-pad, reviewed and had not hit the ball. So they checked for lbw, which was an umpire's call decision. Technically, the umpire had given him out caught, but what about lbw? Had the ball not been caught, he would gave given him not out as he thought he saw an inside edge..

  • Mukundan on February 16, 2013, 17:47 GMT

    Yes. I agree with Nilesh Jain, LBW law must be altered and with so many field restriction it will give more opportunity for the bowlers to bowl with.

  • Shahid on February 16, 2013, 17:21 GMT

    I have made the same case on cricinfo comments quite a few times. This is unfair advantage given to the batsmen where they are at ease putting the pad first if the ball hasn't pitched in line nullifying any swing/spin mastery. As a result of which we are seeing that even the tail enders are able to survive great swing bowling just because of their pads. Basically by the current laws, ICC is telling the bowlers you are not allowed to swing, seam or spin too much. If you do, you have no place in cricket. This is pretty much the main reason that cricket is not producing great swing (not seam) bowlers anymore or the bowlers who like going for the stumps through their swing, instead using slip fielders/keepers too much. Bring back the swing please.

  • Obaid Beg on February 16, 2013, 17:20 GMT

    I agree-it should be fair and square-like the caught behind rule-no matter what, and where the ball dropped. New DRS should be used to override human errors..

  • 07sanjeewakaru on February 16, 2013, 17:15 GMT

    Cricket is a batsman game.So there is a room for not using bat for some deliveries(Pitched Outside the legs stump).I think it's fair.Every delivery that going to hit the stump should not be given as LBW.That will become boring if it were.Batsman some how restrict the ball hitting the stump and bowler some how fail to find the stump.So there is a difference in hitting stump and LBW.I think it's fair rule.

  • Anonymous on February 16, 2013, 17:14 GMT

    I don't think the batsman should have to be hit in line with the stumps when playing a shot to be out, seems kind of arbitrary and nonsensical, but I think allowing the ball to pitch outside leg would be going too far and batsman would be given out LBW perhaps too often. Would also encourage that dreaded ashley giles tactic of left-arm spinners going over the wicket to the right handers, booring.

  • maup on February 16, 2013, 17:04 GMT

    Awesome, I'll just bowl round the wickets all day, aiming for the batsmens pads.

  • Rehan on February 16, 2013, 17:02 GMT

    It wouldn't have been known as the ball of the century if he would have been given out LBW...

  • cric_fan on February 16, 2013, 16:55 GMT

    Your example of Gatting's dismissal illustrates exactly why a batsman should not be given out if the ball pitches outside leg stump. I can easily imagine bowlers, spin or fast, trying to just bowl a leg stump line, and hoping that the batman misses one and be hit on the legs. A batsman's legs block that side of play so it is not the same as playing on offside.

    Did I read this correctly, "or indeed whether the batsman had touched the ball with his bat or not". So does the batsman get no credit for getting a touch on the ball?

    No offense, but your suggestion is too simplistic and lacks nuanced understanding of cricket.

    The rules have evolved and are in place for a reason, no tweaks are needed.

  • ali ahmed khan on February 16, 2013, 16:49 GMT

    No i dont agree because this would encourage negative legside lines by the bowler. A spinner like say, saeed ajmal can just place a short leg and keep bowling from around the legs until the batsman misses one.

  • nasir on February 16, 2013, 16:46 GMT

    as long as the cricket is domonated by the Batsmann there is nu chance to alter the lbw law in favour of Bowler

  • Mujahid Rasool on February 16, 2013, 16:37 GMT

    Very well said. It will also reduce controversial decisions by good 60-70%. After all, a batsman is still out if the ball hit his bat and then hit stumps. Also, a bat-pad catch is still a catch, so why not, for LBW. It should be made simple - will it hit the stumps or not!

  • Shiraz Nasir on February 16, 2013, 16:36 GMT

    I just hope this is an attempt at humour but even then, it is not funny and makes no sense.

  • Imtiaz Muhsin on February 16, 2013, 16:35 GMT

    Correct!

  • Danish on February 16, 2013, 16:35 GMT

    I hope the category of the post was satire, and if so, very well written.

  • AJ on February 16, 2013, 16:32 GMT

    Agree, it is against legspinners.

  • armchairjohnny on February 16, 2013, 16:30 GMT

    I'm all for making the game less batsman-friendly, but please, let's be reasonable and level-headed about how we can do so without ruining the sport. This is a ludicrous idea which changes the dynamic of the game too much in favor of the bowlers. It will make comparisons of the 'modern' game with earlier eras more hazy (imagine how many mediocre bowlers from earlier eras would be 'legends' if such a rule were introduced today). There's also the small matter of shorter innings and the length of test matches being reduced, leading to fewer spectator days, fewer tickets being sold, less revenue for boards etc. I also think it will lead to a demise of innovation in bowling -- bowling will simply become a reductionist discipline which rewards gun-barrel straight bowlers, rather than cerebral bowlers (like Mcgrath/Steyn) who have a range of methods for dislodging a batsman and know how to out-think batsmen regardless of the conditions. Let's get rid of helmets instead for real cricket ;)

  • Nadeem Qureshi on February 16, 2013, 16:24 GMT

    An excellent point raised - one which common sense ought to have dictated ages ago.

    Is anyone listening (reading)?

  • Seil on February 16, 2013, 16:22 GMT

    Be practical. It comes down to the stance and the unfair advantage that bowlers have due to that.

  • Ahad on February 16, 2013, 16:14 GMT

    Great article, I really like your opinion and share it as well. But with the current law, bowlers who bowls from the leg-side of a batsman requires a certain degree of skill and accuracy to have to pitch in line and trap the batsman LBW- a great sight to see for a cricket fan when a bowler does accomplish those goals. If they decide to get rid of that, I will miss appreciating such a feat.

  • sjahangir on February 16, 2013, 16:14 GMT

    Just a thought. Wouldn't it lead to very negative bowling. Pack the leg side field and bowl down leg all day long. Would be the final nail in the coffin for cricket.

  • Rangeet on February 16, 2013, 16:09 GMT

    I'm sorry Nilesh, have you even watched cricket? The entire point of such conditions in the LBW laws is so that the bowlers don't bowl that defensively. What's stopping a leg spinner from simply bowling way outside the leg stumps and letting it spin? Right now, what's stopping him is that you can't get wickets that way. Remove the law and every team will have a billion leg spinners. And of course, the off-stump rules are to encourage the batsmen to play shots.

    The LBW lines are fine as they are, thank you very much.

  • Asif on February 16, 2013, 16:03 GMT

    Hi Nilesh, It seems you have never played actual cricket. Hitting a batsman's pad from outside leg stump, while targetting stumps is really easy, and especially for quick bowlers.

    Regards,

  • Ali on February 16, 2013, 16:03 GMT

    So basically you want under 50 scores in test cricket to be a norm rather than an exception?

  • Satish Naidu on February 16, 2013, 16:01 GMT

    It needs to pitch inline with the wickets or outside the off stump because of one very basic thing - the batsman's front leg (for a right-handed his left leg) is always in the way of his bat. He always needs to work around it. The bowler shouldn't gain an unfair advantage by bowling on his legs.

  • Ash on February 16, 2013, 15:55 GMT

    As an umpire you can't easily predict the path of a ball intercepted outside the line of the stumps. In the case of the inside edge, the task is virtually impossible. Since umpires outside the rarefied world of international cricket can't call on Hawkeye, the proposal is impractical. The ball of the century was a wonder precisely because, right up until the moment of impact, it looked as if it was going to miss. If the same ball strikes a batsman on the pads, he should be given not out, whatever the prevailing law, since no umpire can sensibly predict that it would hit the stumps. The current version of the LBW law has been in place for around 60 years. It isn't broken and doesn't need fixing.

  • Madu S Narayanan on February 16, 2013, 15:49 GMT

    In my opinion, the leg stump rule came into the picture only to avoid negative bowling tactics, esp. that of a leg spinner to a RHB and vice versa. So from that viewpoint, the leg stump rule for ruling out LBW completely makes sense and is very much within the spirit of the game, so should stay. Even if that complicates the game rule and umpiring policy, I believe that is the cost we need to pay to ensure competitive cricket. As for as the example of Shane Warne that was quoted, we all know great spinners like him are very rare who always show the intent to play positive and attacking cricket and seldom are affected by rules. But it may not hold true for any non-attacking bowlers for whom it is very easy to stick to a leg stump line to get a LBW dismissal in his/ her favor.

  • Imran on February 16, 2013, 15:48 GMT

    Agreed that the lbw law needs simplifying, but t not tot he degree you're suggesting. The rule stipulating that the ball must not pitch outside leg stump makes sense, as it discourages negative field settings - otherwise, the bowling captain oould just pack the leg side field and his bowlers could bowl the leg-side line all day to righ-handers and never concede any runs. Taking the lbw option out of that equation encourages more attacking cricket.

    However, the "ball must hit the pad inside the line of off-stump" and requiring the batsman not to play a shot rule is just nonsensical, there is no sound reasoning behind it and it needs to go. It would help off-spinners take more wickets as well

  • BigMan on February 16, 2013, 15:45 GMT

    I disagree relating to pitching outside leg. If that rule was abolished, then we would see a rise of bowlers bowling outside leg. It's very difficult for a batsmen to play balls pitching outside and angling in with e.g. Tendulkar vs Giles, and would give rise to a number of ultra defensive bowlers and bore the world.

  • Vishnu on February 16, 2013, 15:38 GMT

    Nilesh Jain, come on man how many times a bowler is going to bowl the ball of the century, even Shane Warne cannot repeat in his peak again. So how can an umpire be so sure every ball pitching outside is going to hit the stumps. One more thing for your information, leg side is always a blind spot , how do you allow a bowler in test match bowling way outside the leg and taking unfair advantage of keeping the batsman quiet. Also think of the wide rules, a delivery marginally pitching outside leg is wide but not the case is with the offside. If you are a batsman you would know that your side vision is always with in the line of the delivery unless you are Chanderpaul) when you are facing middle and off. Hence the exception for the leg side rules. Please do some analysis before posting an article.

  • Scritty on February 16, 2013, 15:07 GMT

    The LBW law as it is is to prevent negative bowling and defensive leg side fields. If the assumption is that the batsmans primary (and maybe only) job is to survive..then the law needs changing. But that isn't the case, a batsman's job is to score runs, and if that means offering the bat to balls pitched outside leg stump - then that's fair enough. The rule changes you suggest could even bring about a new form of (slightly less attacking) bodyline. What should be changed is the "half a ball" rule using DRS which effectively reduces the area the bowler must hit by 20%. Remember if DRS does have any error in it's prjection of ball flight, then this could just as possibly ALREADY be in the batters - rather than the bowlers - favour to begin with!

  • stephen on February 16, 2013, 14:56 GMT

    Thats absurd that would create right hand bowlers bowling around the wicket trying to hit the pads.Most likely with a 2/7 field.it would be boring cricket.

  • talha jamshed on February 16, 2013, 14:47 GMT

    Ya i completely agree with you Nilesh.And i think they have to get rid of the "umpire's call" when it comes to DRS.It makes all the decisions much more complicated.For me when the ball hits the stumps it means out so there is no need of any complications what so ever.

  • Maximus on February 16, 2013, 14:43 GMT

    Agree. Someone has finally stated what should have been widely questioned already. I understand the motivation for the exceptions built into the simple LBW law, but they are simply not strong enough to be fair anymore. With an exception of deliberate paddings by batsmen well-aware of the offside exception, almost all of the applications of these two exceptions to LBW, serve nothing but a reprieve to the batsmen who failed to "bat".

  • Hi on February 16, 2013, 14:27 GMT

    Totally agree

  • Anonymous on February 16, 2013, 14:26 GMT

    Great one...

  • Johnny Rook on February 16, 2013, 14:17 GMT

    I agree with this completely in principle. It makes perfect sense to give the batsman out if umpire thinks that ball was going to hit the stumps immterial of where ball pitched or where the impact happened.

    There are concerns though on implementation front. An umpire can't judge if the ball is going to hit the stumps if it is turning a lot. Even if HawkEye/VirtualEye work great and are affordable, it would be a very difficult and controversial decision. Secondly, it would encourage the bowler to bowl a negative line. Assuming bowler and batsman both to be right-handed, bowler will bowl round the wicket on leg stump line. He may endure a couple of boundaries but has a good probability of sneaking a wicket. This will go against traditional cricket and purists won't like it a bit. But still it is worth a try.

  • charlie on February 16, 2013, 14:14 GMT

    Sounds like a plausible argument ! I often felt that leg- spinners have suffered too often in the past because of the deffinition of the rule ,while off-spinners benefitted conversely . Another point of discussion is where the edge nullifies the LBW ,while allowing for the bowl by hit-wicket . Lots of arguments would surely come about with this one !

  • Praveen on February 16, 2013, 14:13 GMT

    "or indeed whether the batsman had touched the ball with his bat or not" I think I wouldn't agree with this point. It should not be given out if the ball touched bat before the pads. One, it is not certain whether it would go and hit stumps. Two, it would be more difficult to use tracking technologies. Other than that, I am fine with it.

  • Abra. on February 16, 2013, 14:12 GMT

    Should it matter how a person is Bowled? NO. Then why does it matter when a person is "Almost" Bowled but his Body comes in front of the wickets, and we start Judging if the ball was a Leg-break, off break, how much swing, around the wicket, over the wicket ....

    I think LBW law needs an Over haul.

  • Mahesh on February 16, 2013, 14:10 GMT

    I agree with your point abt hitting outside the off stump, that rule is stupid, playing shot or not if the ball is going to hit the stumps should be given out. Even if the batsman was hit outside the line of the stumps. This doesnt give bowler any unfair advantage. But outside the leg pitching and not given out makes sense. This stops bowler from using negative tactics. We all know it is easier to hit a ball if pitched outside the off, but outside the leg can be difficult.Warne's case is rare, Gatting had the liberty to avoid being bowled by using his pads, but he did not.

  • Engle on February 16, 2013, 13:47 GMT

    Could not agree more with Nilesh Jain. The current law is a mish-mash the misses a simple point.

    But for the batsman's body, was the ball going to hit the stumps ?

    If so, then the batsmen is out. He has been well and truly beaten. There are no excuses, arguments or hair-splitting.

    The benefits of this simple law change would be immense - especially the elimination of on field arguments. Just follow the ball tracking technology and if it says it would hit the wkt, then take a walk Mr. Batsman

  • Paul on February 16, 2013, 13:46 GMT

    Would never work. This is definitely a suggestion by someone who has never played cricket, and has only watched it. Batsmen would struggle to reach double figures and the game would turn into a game of the bowler coming around the wicket and firing balls in at the batsman's pads.

    I don't watch cricket to see LBW's being given, you watch it for an equal contest between bat and ball. LBW's should be difficult to achieve and biased in favour of the batsman. He only gets one chance, the bowler gets potentially hundreds of chances...

  • Nick on February 16, 2013, 13:42 GMT

    Agree with some of this. The playing a shot or outside the line could be removed and nobody would be too upset. I don't see why stuffing your front pad a foot or so outside off to a delivery that's done you all ends up has to be a legitimate form of defense. More often than not with a pretend forward defensive that was several minutes behind the ball hitting the pad. The leg side rule could get a bit silly with bowlers coming around the wicket and bowling several feet outside leg to get an LBW.Also makes run scoring tricky, effectively the game would be played on 1 side of the wicket.

  • Vijai on February 16, 2013, 13:40 GMT

    The rules favor the batsman and to change now will impact significantly on their ability to survive and score runs. Scoring Lots of runs make the game interesting. What about comparisons of past and present players should the rules of LBW be changed?

  • Juned Khan on February 16, 2013, 13:37 GMT

    Totally agree... I think current cricketing rules favor batsman much more than the bowler... Balance should be made between the two to make game much more interesting...

  • Aadil on February 16, 2013, 13:28 GMT

    Sorry Nilesh, simplicity is the solution for most of the problems but not to take into account all the information is ghastly wrong. To be specific, ball pitching leg stump shouldn't be out at any moment of time since it encourages negative line and you cant play normal cricket if someone decides to come around the wicket and pitches at 6th stump and hits you on your leg... it is called french cricket and you would stand square on.. so cricket is not just the game between ball trying to hit wickets. And moreover it is about ethics as well, someone bowling negative leg stump line was not considered ethical hence the Bodyline was banned. Imagine T20 whr bowlers are trying to hit legs of batsmen.

    Though same thing is not true for outside off stump, i would also like to see the law changed to favour bowlers in this case since that is indeed unfair use of pads.

  • DC75 on February 16, 2013, 13:20 GMT

    Cannot agree more, the LBW laws are stacked against the bowler, and particulraly those bowling round the stumps or leg spin

  • yetandra on February 16, 2013, 13:20 GMT

    Changing in the rule as said in the article, will lead to negative bowling from the bowlers, pitching it outside the legstump... leaving the legstump aside, the rule should get more strict in determining the batsman has a played a shot or not.. lot of batsman tuck the bat inside line and allow the ball to hit the pad... as if they are attempting a shot... id this rule is changed then.. the batsman are compelled to use their bat when the ball is on the offside and hitting the stumps... which serves the primary purpose of the article.... making the batsman using their bat to stop the ball from hitting the stumps...

  • Pramod MJ on February 16, 2013, 13:19 GMT

    I don't think it should be so.. coz, this just helps people to try bowling a negative line.. I'm a fan of warne coming around the wickets and testing his skills, but that line would always have more percentage of balls hitting the pads... The batsman must be given the choice of whether he wants to bring the bat into the equation or not, when a bowler tries that line of attack..

  • Pete on February 16, 2013, 13:16 GMT

    If the LBW law changed to accommodate the ball pitching outside leg, it would encourage negative bowling, and surely legspinners bowling to right handers would collect many many lbws from bowling around the wicket ....

  • Arvind on February 16, 2013, 13:08 GMT

    I totally agree, the LBW law is needlessly complicated. The "pitched outside leg" rule was introduced to protect mediocre "legendary" batsmen who didn't know how to play spin. The "offering a shot" rule makes zero sense to me. A batsman's job is to bat, and that includes hitting the ball with the bat. Why should he be let off just for "attempting" a shot when he misses a ball which would hit the stumps? Then why not reprieve him from getting bowled when he "offered" a shot. Keep it simple. If a legitimate delivery would have hit the stumps, and the batsman blocked it (intentionally or not) with anything other than the bat, then it is out LBW.

  • Syed Basit on February 16, 2013, 13:06 GMT

    I find this article rather hilarious, you can't be serious!

    Batsmen will drop like flies if what you are suggesting is implemented. Picture this: Right hand batsman facing a leg-spinner who is turning it a mile, ball pitches outside leg, batsman sweeps, misses, hits the pad outside the line of the stumps, ball going on to hit wickets...under your revamped lbw rule, he'd be out trying to play a shot that was on, where is the sense in that? Sounds like bowlers will be buying wickets at a super cheap price, one mistake by the batsman = a wicket.

    You're looking at it all wrong. Where's the art of bowling if we start giving every ball hit on the pads that is hitting the stumps as out? We won't enjoy lbw's as they are right now, they'd become as common as 6's in T20 matches. This article reminds me of what I thought lbw meant when I was 8 or 9 years old.

  • Nader on February 16, 2013, 12:55 GMT

    Fine article - excellent argument. Heard Sir Ian Botham respond to this one by saying "it would make for shorter games if LBW was given for those that pitched outside leg." Some justification about the potential of batsman losing sight of the ball when it's outside leg. Like how the author uses "ball of the century" to make the case.

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  • Nader on February 16, 2013, 12:55 GMT

    Fine article - excellent argument. Heard Sir Ian Botham respond to this one by saying "it would make for shorter games if LBW was given for those that pitched outside leg." Some justification about the potential of batsman losing sight of the ball when it's outside leg. Like how the author uses "ball of the century" to make the case.

  • Syed Basit on February 16, 2013, 13:06 GMT

    I find this article rather hilarious, you can't be serious!

    Batsmen will drop like flies if what you are suggesting is implemented. Picture this: Right hand batsman facing a leg-spinner who is turning it a mile, ball pitches outside leg, batsman sweeps, misses, hits the pad outside the line of the stumps, ball going on to hit wickets...under your revamped lbw rule, he'd be out trying to play a shot that was on, where is the sense in that? Sounds like bowlers will be buying wickets at a super cheap price, one mistake by the batsman = a wicket.

    You're looking at it all wrong. Where's the art of bowling if we start giving every ball hit on the pads that is hitting the stumps as out? We won't enjoy lbw's as they are right now, they'd become as common as 6's in T20 matches. This article reminds me of what I thought lbw meant when I was 8 or 9 years old.

  • Arvind on February 16, 2013, 13:08 GMT

    I totally agree, the LBW law is needlessly complicated. The "pitched outside leg" rule was introduced to protect mediocre "legendary" batsmen who didn't know how to play spin. The "offering a shot" rule makes zero sense to me. A batsman's job is to bat, and that includes hitting the ball with the bat. Why should he be let off just for "attempting" a shot when he misses a ball which would hit the stumps? Then why not reprieve him from getting bowled when he "offered" a shot. Keep it simple. If a legitimate delivery would have hit the stumps, and the batsman blocked it (intentionally or not) with anything other than the bat, then it is out LBW.

  • Pete on February 16, 2013, 13:16 GMT

    If the LBW law changed to accommodate the ball pitching outside leg, it would encourage negative bowling, and surely legspinners bowling to right handers would collect many many lbws from bowling around the wicket ....

  • Pramod MJ on February 16, 2013, 13:19 GMT

    I don't think it should be so.. coz, this just helps people to try bowling a negative line.. I'm a fan of warne coming around the wickets and testing his skills, but that line would always have more percentage of balls hitting the pads... The batsman must be given the choice of whether he wants to bring the bat into the equation or not, when a bowler tries that line of attack..

  • yetandra on February 16, 2013, 13:20 GMT

    Changing in the rule as said in the article, will lead to negative bowling from the bowlers, pitching it outside the legstump... leaving the legstump aside, the rule should get more strict in determining the batsman has a played a shot or not.. lot of batsman tuck the bat inside line and allow the ball to hit the pad... as if they are attempting a shot... id this rule is changed then.. the batsman are compelled to use their bat when the ball is on the offside and hitting the stumps... which serves the primary purpose of the article.... making the batsman using their bat to stop the ball from hitting the stumps...

  • DC75 on February 16, 2013, 13:20 GMT

    Cannot agree more, the LBW laws are stacked against the bowler, and particulraly those bowling round the stumps or leg spin

  • Aadil on February 16, 2013, 13:28 GMT

    Sorry Nilesh, simplicity is the solution for most of the problems but not to take into account all the information is ghastly wrong. To be specific, ball pitching leg stump shouldn't be out at any moment of time since it encourages negative line and you cant play normal cricket if someone decides to come around the wicket and pitches at 6th stump and hits you on your leg... it is called french cricket and you would stand square on.. so cricket is not just the game between ball trying to hit wickets. And moreover it is about ethics as well, someone bowling negative leg stump line was not considered ethical hence the Bodyline was banned. Imagine T20 whr bowlers are trying to hit legs of batsmen.

    Though same thing is not true for outside off stump, i would also like to see the law changed to favour bowlers in this case since that is indeed unfair use of pads.

  • Juned Khan on February 16, 2013, 13:37 GMT

    Totally agree... I think current cricketing rules favor batsman much more than the bowler... Balance should be made between the two to make game much more interesting...

  • Vijai on February 16, 2013, 13:40 GMT

    The rules favor the batsman and to change now will impact significantly on their ability to survive and score runs. Scoring Lots of runs make the game interesting. What about comparisons of past and present players should the rules of LBW be changed?