ICC Media Release
The newly constituted ICC Cricket Committee concluded its two-day meeting in Dubai on Thursday evening.
The group was chaired by former India captain and ICC Cricket World Cup winner Sunil Gavaskar and included former Australia captain Mark Taylor, Sri Lanka captain Mahela Jayawardene and Michael Holding, the ex-West Indies fast bowler.
It also featured Umpire of the Year Simon Taufel, chief ICC match referee and former Sri Lanka captain Ranjan Madugalle, Craig Wright, the former Scotland captain, Tom Moody, the ex-Australia all-rounder who recently coached Sri Lanka to the final of the ICC Cricket World Cup in the Caribbean and Tim May, former Australia off-spinner and the Chief Executive Officer of the Federation of International Cricketers' Associations.
The ICC Cricket Committee is empowered to make recommendations which then go forward to the Chief Executives' Committee (CEC) for approval. If that approval is forthcoming then the decisions can be ratified at the ICC Board.
As such, any recommendations made by the ICC Cricket Committee will not take effect until they are ratified and/or approved by CEC and the Board.
Both CEC and the ICC Board are scheduled to meet in London from 24 June.
The following were among the issues covered by the ICC Cricket Committee:Ball tampering
The committee was asked by the ICC Board to review the Law as it relates to ball tampering. This followed the events at the Test match in August when the umpires awarded the match to England on the grounds of Pakistan's refusal to play after it was accused of ball tampering.
The committee recommended that:
Any action/s likely to alter the condition of the ball which are not specifically permitted under Law 42.3 (a) may be regarded as ‘unfair'. The following actions shall not be permitted (This list of actions is not exhaustive but included for illustrative purposes):
Deliberately throwing the ball into the ground for purposes of roughing it up Applying any artificial substance to the ball; and applying any non-artificial substance for any purpose other than to polish the ball Lifting or otherwise interfering with any of the seams of the ball Scratching the surface of the ball with finger or thumb nails or any implement
The umpires shall use their judgement to apply the principle that actions taken to maintain or enhance the condition of the ball, provided no artificial substances are used, shall be permitted. Any actions taken with the purpose of damaging the condition of the ball or accelerating the deterioration of the condition of the ball shall not be permitted.
The standard ICC playing conditions for Tests, ODIs and Twenty20 matches can be found at: http://www.icc-cricket.com/icc/rules/
ODI playing conditions
The committee made the following recommendations:
Glue on pitches
The committee recommended that the use of adhesives in the preparation of pitches for international matches should be discontinued.
Referrals to TV umpire
The committee recommended the maintenance of the current regulations, which allow umpires to consult with TV officials on the subject of clean catches only if both on-field umpires are unsighted.
The committee also decided against recommending a trial of the use of player appeals to the TV umpire at this year's ICC World Twenty20 2007 - South Africa; instead it suggested that the system be trialed in as many countries as possible (it is currently being used in one domestic competition in the UK) so that further evidence on its effectiveness or otherwise can be obtained.
The committee recommended the setting up of a task force with an independent chairman to look at how best to take international umpiring to the next level.
The task force's remit would include deciding how best to structure the International and Elite Panels; looking at how support structures for umpires can be financed and put in place; umpires' remuneration; and whether or not it is appropriate for umpires to be able to stand in Tests and ICC events where their home country/Member is involved.
The committee did not support the return of Zimbabwe to Test cricket until such time as the team demonstrates its ability to perform at a standard that does not risk undermining the integrity of Test cricket.
In order to be able to judge when Zimbabwe's performance merits a return to Test cricket, the committee felt the team first needed to continue in its current practice of playing a number of representative four-day matches. The committee encouraged the scheduling of such matches against ICC Full Member A teams and Associates with, for example, the inclusion of Zimbabwe in the next ICC Intercontinental Cup.
Volume of cricket
The committee expressed concern about the congestion in the international calendar and, in particular, the addition of many ODIs which, it felt, may have a severe impact on the quality, intensity and standard of international cricket and may result in injuries to players and a dearth of fast bowlers.