ICC in no mood to force DRS on member countries

The International Cricket Council (ICC) may strongly be backing the umpires’ decision review system (DRS), but the apex body is still hesitating to make it a firm rule for all the member countries.

The DRS has been a bone of contention between the ICC the Board of Control for Cricket in Indian (BCCI), which is the richest national body in the sport.

Even though several countries have accepted the DRS, the BCCI has been opposing the system tooth and nail on the ground that it is not foolproof.

According to ICC chief executive Dave Richardson, majority of the member countries wanted to have DRS, which was aimed at minimising controversies.

“At present, the rule is that the countries who are playing can decide whether they want it. There are a number of teams and players who want to have DRS,” said Richardson on the sidelines of the third One-Day International between India and Pakistan at the Ferozeshah Kotla here on Sunday.

“Our thinking is to work and improve the technology, the accuracy and reliability of both the hotspot and ball tracking so that when it is used it works well.

“I think in the long run, it is good for the game. To avoid umpiring controversies, our goal is to make sure that if it is used, it should be used well. The policy is do not force it on the member nations.”

Attractive matches

Touching upon the new ODI rules, including one that allowed five fielders inside the 30-yard circle for the whole match, Richardson said the change was aimed at making the matches more attractive. “It is far too early to pass a judgement whether it will be successful or not. The purpose of it is to make cricket more attacking, both from batting and bowling point of view.

“There is opportunity for batmen but there is also opportunity for bowlers to take wickets because the batsman cannot just milk the bowling, ones and twos.

“For me, we will have to have full year’s cricket, have all the stats and see whether it contributed to more attacking cricket — which is more runs per over and more wickets per over — and take it from there.”

Richardson said there was still space for ODIs in world cricket.

“There is no doubt in my mind that the 50-over product is still a good product. It is virtually a full house here (at Kotla). To me, it provides a balance. It is a full day’s game and you get a result. There is still a place for the 50-over game.”

A Concern

The former South African wicketkeeper-batsman said it was a concern that the ICC still did not have a Test event and the scene could change in 2017 with the apex body holding at least one event in each format.

Speaking about the possibility of having day-night Tests, Richardson said not many grounds in the world were suitable to host such contests.

“There are very few venues in the world that can host day-night matches because you cannot really have dew, the lights have to be good. If you find there is no dew and lights are good, then there is no problem.”

On the ICC providing a window for the Indian Premier League (IPL), Richardson said it was practically impossible as several countries had their own domestic Twenty20 leagues.

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