Cricket Australia (CA) is contemplating the implementation of the ‘timed-out’ rule in the upcoming Big Bash League (BBL) season. Their intention is to speed up the play even quicker than before.
The CA’s playing conditions committee is considering shortening the time gap between a wicket falling and the arrival of the next batsman at the crease. If it goes past the time that was allotted, the batsman/batting team will be punished for it.
As of now, the law states: “After the fall of a wicket or the retirement of a batter, the incoming batter must, unless Time has been called, be in a position to take guard or for the other batter to be ready to receive the next ball within 3 minutes of the dismissal or retirement. If this requirement is not met, the incoming batter will be out, Timed out.”
Previously, BBL reduced the time window from 180 seconds to 60 seconds. It wasn’t implemented strictly as witnessed in the last season. Now, a 75-second limit might be put in place to get the game going at a faster rate. For this, however, there won’t be a time-out in play.
The new option that Cricket Australia is considering for BBL
Instead, it has been proposed that the bowler be given the batter’s version of a free-hit. Here, the batter will have to stand away from the stumps and let the bowler have a free hit at the stumps – basically, the bowl-out that was in play in the 2007 T20 World Cup.
Assuming the bowler fails to hit the stumps, the batter will be allowed to start the innings. The idea behind it is to make sure the batters aren’t lethargic after the fall of a wicket and arrive at the crease quickly.
“We know Big Bash fans want to watch fast-paced, exciting cricket on TV and in the stadium. We have spent the off-season looking at ways to keep the game moving and are close to finalizing what this might look like,” BBL general manager Alistair Dobson was quoted as saying to ESPNcricinfo.
The schedule for the upcoming season of the BBL is still being worked upon considering the tight restrictions in place in Australia.