Hampshire Cricket History


No Ball!
June 13, 2016, 10:02 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

The Sri Lankans were very unlucky yesterday when they dismissed Alex Hales but the umpire Rod Tucker called “no ball’.

Since then I’ve heard and read quite a few discussions/comments saying the answer is simple – in such a case it should be possible to review and alter the on-field call just as happens in reverse when an umpire misses the no ball.

But it isn’t that simple. I don’t think it happens very often with front foot no balls but it is possible that the call would lead a batsman to alter his shot. If he heaves across the line looking for free runs and is bowled how can he be given out when he might otherwise have played a straight, defensive shot? And how can anyone else know his real intentions and whether he changed his shot?

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7 Comments so far
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I think, at least at international level, there is a simple answer. There are cameras looking along the popping creases. The third umpire watches the bowlers foot and if the bowler oversteps he presses a buzzer which gives the on field umpire a signal, who then signals the no ball. While the signal by the on field umpire will be slightly later than at present, realistically the batsman does not get time to change his shot (hence the free hit in one day cricket). Perhaps there should be a free hit in first class cricket, it seems to stop no balls in one day cricket.

Comment by Bob Murrell

Interestingly I heard Alec Stewart talking about this on TMS earlier today and he said that in his entire career he didn’t ever change his shot in response to a no-ball call.

Bearing in mind it is actually physically impossible for umpires to give a truly accurate calls as they are always looking at the line at an angle it is surely time now to use technology to assist when it is available.

Comment by James

I don’t think Alec Stewart would ever adnit an act of indiscipline!

Comment by Ageas

Thanks both. You’d only need one batsman once to admit he had changed a shot and you’d have a problem. I agree about technology since we have it – maybe the other solution is that you cannot be out from a no ball but if it’s never called immediately then there should be a ‘free hit’ in all forms? Or maybe two penalty runs is a sufficient penalty anyway?

Comment by Dave Allen

I have previously heard Dave Richardson of the ICC say that the reason they don’t retrospectively change incorrect no-ball calls is precisely because of the reason you mention.

However if batsmen knew this might happen perhaps they would be even less likely to change a shot?

Personally (assuming the technology is always available) in Test cricket I would have front-foot no balls called by the third umpire and increase the penalty from one run to two (to match County cricket). I reckon that very quickly this would almost totally stop overstepping and this particular problem would disappear.

Comment by James

This year the Winchester Evening League introduced a new law for Wides. Instead of 1 run and an extra ball, they award three runs and no extra ball (a wide that goes to the boundary is a 7!). This has had a dramatic effect in the games we’ve played so far. Games are finishing in daylight, and hardly any wides are bowled! Their other novel invention is the ‘Super over’ in which runs scored count double. This replaces the ‘power play’ as at our level fielding circles aren’t possible at all grounds. Astonishingly, this seems to work as well! So far, they haven’t meddled with the no-ball . . .

Comment by Bob Elliott

I am not too concerned about the case where a batsman plays a more aggressive (i.e. risky) shot on hearing the “no ball” and is subsequently given out. The batting team is already getting an extra run (or two) for the no ball. The batsman must weigh up the value of additional runs (by changing their shot) against the added risk of being given out if the no ball is overturned on review.

Comment by Hedgehog




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