New guidelines for cricket when it returns

Umpires may wear gloves to handle the ball and refuse to take a bowler’s hat whenever cricket returns from its Covid-19 stoppage.

The International Cricket Council has released a set of guidelines, in consultation with members, for the safe resumption of the sport.

The ICC’s cricket committee had already flagged likely law changes to the highest level, with local umpires to be used and players barred from using saliva to shine the ball.

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Some of the sport’s other traditions will have to be scrapped if sides are to follow medical advice from the ICC group, chaired by Australian doctor Peter Harcourt.

The post-wicket huddle will no longer be possible because of social distancing requirements, while it is now recommended teams minimize “time spent in the changing room before and after a match”.

Players and officials will be told to maintain social distancing on the field, so bowlers won’t be handing over caps, sweaters, sunglasses, or any other items to the standing umpire.

Players will be told not to pass items to teammates, so the common practice of flinging a helmet and other protective equipment to a fellow fielder will need to stop.


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