ICC news April 4, 2013

ICC adopts no-ball Law after Finn problem

ESPNcricinfo staff

The ICC has introduced a largely-anticipated new playing condition to international cricket with a no-ball set to be called when a bowler breaks the non-striker's end stumps in the delivery stride.

The MCC had already announced a change to the Laws of the game from October 1 and the ICC has taken the initiative to introduce a new playing recognition for Tests, ODIs and T20s from April 30.

Previously, when the non-striker's end stumps were broken in the delivery stride a dead-ball was called, following an initial warning, regardless of the outcome of the delivery. The new regulation provides clarity on what had been an issue of controversy.

The change was prompted by England bowler Steven Finn who repeatedly broke the non-striker's end stumps against South Africa in 2012. In the Headingley Test, Graeme Smith complained that he was being distracted and the umpires decided to begin calling a dead-ball. Smith was subsequently caught at slip when Finn had broken the stumps and a dead-ball was called.

ICC's General Manager - Cricket, Geoff Allardice, said a change in playing conditions was necessary because the current solution of a dead-ball was inadequate. "The MCC recently decided to address this issue by introducing a new no-ball Law. The ICC cricket committee noted the MCC's decision and recommended that a playing condition, mirroring the new Law, be introduced to international cricket as early as possible."

The decision was ratified at the ICC chief executives committee meeting in Dubai. "The ICC has decided to introduce this playing condition five months prior to the MCC changing the Law because there is a lot of important cricket to be played before October 1, including the ICC Champions Trophy in June," Allardice said.

"The introduction of this playing condition will now provide greater certainty for all involved when a bowler breaks the wickets during the act of delivery."

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on April 6, 2013, 14:36 GMT

    Seems strange how quickly the ICC can act on somethiong as insignificant as a dead ball/no ball revision.. yet something as ridiculous as exists with the current DRS Regulation, remains unsolved.. I wonder if Finn had been an Indian bowler would the BCCI have supported this move...

  • Manesh on April 6, 2013, 6:16 GMT

    @ Wyper. In that case, what about ball slipping out of hand and bowler stop midway of runup? who can judge it deliberate or not? I still remember a video of England bowler Darren Gough who stuck his tongue out in his bowling? But the case is different here - the stumps must be static when a bowler bowls. That's crystal clear rule.

  • Hussain on April 5, 2013, 22:11 GMT

    A bowler who doesn't know where his hands are must be punished in this way. Good decision from ICC.

  • Jay on April 5, 2013, 16:12 GMT

    This rule will have no effect on those bowlers who try to get as close to the stumps as possible. Bowlers like McGrath, Stuart Clark, Philander never disturbed the stumps. Even in Finn's case, the ICC waited for Finn to correct it. But when he didn't correct this seemingly simple problem, they had to intervene. Since Finn didn't rectify his action in time, he has to do it now or else its a no ball. Other bowlers can go about their business without worrying if its a no-ball or not because even when it wasn't, it never affected their game and they haven't lost any advantage.

  • randolf on April 5, 2013, 13:26 GMT

    ibanny, a delivery in this context is only a "No-ball" if the bowler in the said motion of completing a delivery to a batsman (the striker), that bowler disturbds the wickets at his end. Hence, the ball must be delivered to be a "No-ball". So, the non-striker cannot be "Run Out" in such cicumstance involving that moment of the action of the delivery. If however, in the motion of delivering a ball, the bowler discovers that he has disturbed the wickets and was able to abort the completion of the delivery, but in doing so, he discovered that the non-striker is out of his ground (if even it was not intentional in the first place), he may appeal for a "Run Out" against the non-striker and is "Out" according to law.

  • randolf on April 5, 2013, 12:13 GMT

    I feel honoured that the ICC has implemented this change which was first suggested by me. But full credit would have been given to the person if this change was first suggested by a "big wig" eg: Botham or Gower. Anyhow, I'm not seeking any self praise on the matter, I'm only glad to see common sense prevail. I'm the first person also who suggested that it be called the "Finn Law ". I would really be honoured if it is being so called. Let me also clarify "ibanny's" concerns: ibanny, the ball is only a No-ball if it is delivered by the bowler in the same motion when he disturbed the wickets at his end. Hence, the batsman at that end cannot be run out when the ball has been delivered in that said motion. But, if in the motion of delivering a ball, the bowler discovers that he has hit the wicket before he completes that delivery, and finds the non striker out of his ground when he hit the wickets with that aborted delivery, he may appeal for a RUN OUT; and the batsman is "OUT" by law!

  • Dummy4 on April 5, 2013, 11:48 GMT

    So will there be a free hit for the "Finns ball"?

  • Shanaka on April 5, 2013, 11:44 GMT

    Then what will happen to the mankad dismissal ??

  • Dummy4 on April 5, 2013, 11:30 GMT

    Ridiculous. It does no harm, it doesn't distract the batsman (mostly they don't even notice), all it does is penalise the fielding side slightly by making it harder to compete a run-out at the bowler's end. The new rule will discourage bowlers from getting in close to the stumps in their delivery stride, which I thought was supposed to be a good thing.

  • Allan on April 5, 2013, 11:07 GMT

    Will this rule become known as "Finns law"?