Cricket is an outdoor game, and no other game is affected more the external factors than cricket, be it rain, bad light or scorching conditions. And the recent incidence of Joe Root getting dehydrated in the final Ashes Test in Sydney because of the scorching heat had raised a question over the player’s safety, and after a recent meeting, the MCC has decided that the umpires can take the players off the field in extreme heat conditions.
Root fell ill from gastroenteritis but the grueling heat the day before added more to his problems. Even grade cricket in Sydney was suspended at the weekend because of the heat, but in Test cricket, there are no guidelines for suspending play in such a situation.
However, the match referee did allow to take extra drinks in the afternoon session to help players rehydrate. Cricket Australia has an extreme heat guideline in place using an index to measure discomfort levels. The index takes into account temperature, humidity, wind, sun angle and cloud cover.
“Such an index could be used by other boards, including the ICC, to protect players, officials and fans in extreme temperatures,” said the MCC committee in a statement.
The committee allowed full use of substitutes in the case of concussion injuries and for stem guards on helmets to be mandatory in professional cricket.
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