IPL GC Decisions: ‘No Ball Umpire’, ‘Power Player’ Idea Shelved
The Indian Premier League’s Governing Council, chaired by former Test batsman Brijesh Patel, met at the BCCI headquarters on Tuesday, 5 November, to discuss a host of issues including FTP window, availability of foreign players, FTP of Indian team and the possibility of franchises playing friendlies abroad.
The much-hyped 'Power Player' concept was also tabled at the meeting but with only a small window left to test it out. So, the rule, for now, has been shelved. However, the IPL is set to announce a new feature next season with an added on-field umpire assigned specifically to check "no balls".
No Test Event For ‘Power Player’ Rule
One of the most anticipated concepts that was discussed in Tuesday’s IPL GC was the widely reported 'Power Play'.
As per the plan put forward, teams would be allowed to substitute a player at the fall of a wicket or at the end of an over at any point in the game. The idea had the capacity to change match situations and induce out-of-the-box thinking and strategising from the two teams and engage the fans further.
However, in the meeting on Tuesday, the GC members decided to discuss the concept further before taking a final call on the matter.
"See, it would have been ideal to try it out in the Mushtaq Ali Trophy, but that isn't a possibility anymore as it starts on Friday, 8 November. In such a scenario, we will have to discuss this further before seeing if such an experiment can be carried out directly in the IPL," a source told IANS.
‘No Ball Umpire’
Another matter that was discussed was the introduction of an extra umpire just to check on no balls. The failure of the umpires in calling no-balls created quite a bit of controversy in the last edition of the IPL with critics calling for better examination procedures to pick the umpires.
"If all goes well, during the next Indian Premier League, you could see another umpire apart from the regular umpires just to "observe" no-balls. The concept sounds weird, but this was among the issues discussed in the first IPL Governing Council meeting which was held here," a senior GC member told reporters after the meet.
"We want to use the technology. We are having another umpire for only observing no-balls. There will be an umpire, who will be focused on no-balls only. And he will not be third or fourth umpire," the member added.
It is understood that the concept of having such umpires could be tried at any of the domestic tournament before a final call will be taken on it.
No IPL Friendlies Abroad
The GC also shelved the proposal of multiple franchises wanting to play a "mini-tournament" or "friendlies abroad" as it would require more detailed study of ICC's Futures Tours Programme (FTP).
It was reported that at least two franchises, Mumbai Indians (MI) and Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), have long been exploring the possibilities of cashing in on their popularity amongst the Indian diaspora.
While the matter came up for discussion, a senior IPL governing council member said that "it's been discussed and the matter has been filed".
"A final call would be taken only after seeing the ICC Future Tours Programme. We have to check the FTP. We are looking at a small tournament or friendlies for the franchises. We are playing now in March, April and May and after that they have nothing. We want to popularise the game abroad as well, but we have to see the FTP and it is subject to that," a GC member said.
However another GC member added that as of now the IPL constitution doesn't allow franchises to play against each other on a foreign location.
"IPL franchises can play a friendly against Somerset, Durham or Middlesex or Adelaide Strikers. That provision is there but there is no provision for two IPL teams playing friendlies abroad. For that the modalities of broadcast rights need to be changed and it's not an easy thing," said the member.
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