Two months ago, Romania's Marian Gherasim became the youngest player to play a men's Twenty20 International when he made his debut against Bulgaria aged 14 years and 16 days. A recent change to the ICC's eligibility rules may well mean that he will hold the record forever.

At the end of a press release that was mostly about the change to a percentage points system for the World Test Championship the ICC announced that from now on anybody under the age of 15 will not be allowed to play international cricket except in exceptional circumstances. The change will also apply to Under-19 ICC events in addition to senior cricket.

The rule change will have a significant impact on associate cricket, particularly in the women's game. Of the two men and 58 women to have played T20Is under the age of 15, all did so for associate members. Notably, of the 15 players to have played women's T20Is for Jersey, 10 did so when younger than 15, Nia Greig being the record holder in the women's game at 11 years and 40 days.

The player pool in associate countries - especially the women's player pool - tends to be small so the situation where a player under 15 is one of the best in the country is much more common than it would be in a full member nation.

There are two reasons behind the rule change. Firstly advice from the ICC medical committee suggested that player welfare wasn't best served by children playing against adults and secondly there are safeguarding concerns, particularly as it relates to youths travelling on international tours with adults.

As with all ICC eligibility criteria there is a possibility of players under the age of 15 still playing under the exceptional circumstances clause. In this case the ICC will expect to see evidence that a player under 15 has demonstrated the ability to compete against adults - such as playing in domestic senior competitions - and will require safeguarding provisions to be in place. The ICC has been working with UNICEF to build its capacity in this area.

Such exceptional circumstances are rarely agreed to by the ICC though, so as it stands the records of Marian Gherasim and Nia Greig may never be broken.