Photo Credit: Cricket Australia
Mandatory use of neck protectors by batters when facing fast or medium bowling and changes to the third umpire review process are among approved changes to Cricket Australia’s playing conditions for the 2023/24 season.
At the conclusion of each season, Cricket Australia (CA) engages stakeholders including States and Territories, internal CA departments, and the Australian Cricketers’ Association (ACA) for suggestions on changes to the playing conditions to further improve the game.
After consultation, the Playing Conditions Advisory Committee meets and provides recommendations to the CA Executive.
Another significant update this season is that when the ball hits the Marvel Stadium roof or part of its structure, the umpires will decide if the ball was going to clear the boundary. If they decide it was, they will award a six; if not it will be ruled a dead ball.
There will also be changes to the way limited overs results are expressed. The result in limited overs cricket will now include the balls remaining in the innings as well as how many wickets the batting team has remaining for successful run chases.
For stumping referrals in the Big Bash Leagues, the Third Umpire will only review the stumping decision and no other modes of dismissal such as caught. Captains can still check other forms of dismissals, but they will need use one of their reviews.
The COVID Substitute has also been removed from the playing conditions in line with the change to the ICC playing conditions.
Peter Roach, Cricket Australia’s Head of Cricket Operations & Scheduling, said:
“We’re always looking for ways to improve our game, whether that be operational around our playing conditions on the field or improving the fan experience.
“Protecting the head and neck is extremely important in our sport. The neck protector product has come a long way in recent years and the decision to make them mandatory comes off the back of a lot of advice and consultation with a wide range of experts and stakeholders.
“Something as simple as adding how many balls were left in a run chase can make cricket more accessible to fans as well as ensuring we are continuing to modernise our game.
“We saw success last season tweaking the playing conditions to reduce the delays in play and will continue to look for improvements in this area. To my knowledge, the Big Bash is the only cricket competition in the world that has successfully reduced innings times in recent years. Some minor changes in the playing conditions along with some real buy-in from players and coaches has helped us achieve this.”
View the full playing conditions for the Marsh Sheffield Shield & Second XI or Women’s National Cricket League & Marsh One-Day Cup.