The Hundred to have 20 balls-per-bowler
The English Cricket Board have informed the MCC Cricket Committee that the six-balls-per-over format will most likely be scrapped in favour of bowlers bowling 20 deliveries in sets of five balls, most probably, in The Hundred.
Sanjay Patel, ECB’s chief commercial officer and managing director of The Hundred, made a presentation at Lord’s to the MCC Cricket Committee and ensured that the rules of the new format would make it recognizable with cricket as we know it.
The MCC Head of Cricket, John Stephenson, meanwhile, stated their biggest concern about the format is whether it stays relevant to cricket but Patel’s presentation has them reassured.
"Basically, they're still developing the concept," said John Stephenson, the MCC Head of Cricket. "As custodians of the Laws of the game, what we're concerned about is if you modify the game of cricket too much it ceases to look like cricket.
"What we heard this morning from Sanjay was quite reassuring … they're still developing how the final format will be.
"The current thinking is 20 five-ball overs, but I think today was part of their consultation. So they wanted to know what we felt about that.
"We threw a few questions back about that about whatever modifications there might be."
There was an idea of a final over consisting of 10 balls and to be bowled by two different bowlers but it has been dismissed by the ECB. Recently, there were reports of The Hundred allowing up to 15 players in a team but Stephenson cleared that a maximum of one substitute is being eyed.
"I think at the maximum, they're looking at having a substitute fielder," Stephenson said. "But I think what that's about is performance - having the best fielders out there at the right time to field.
"But at the moment, as far as I can make out, they'll have 11 batsmen, they won't have 'overs' per se but 100 balls, 20 balls per bowler.
"Apart from that, it'll look like a normal game of cricket.”
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