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Some Old and Awkward Rules Spoils The fun Test Match

Just when the umpires postponed the day’s play due to bad weather; after some time, under full sunshine, There was no Cricket happening.

Almost five months of wait, strict regulations of having bio-bubbles and restrictions by the England Cricket Board, and so much of sacrifice of the Pakistan players of being away from the family for almost two months after flying 6930 km from Lahore and still you find yourself out of cricket because of some old fashioned cricket rules. After a mouth-watering contest in Manchester, all are eagerly waiting for another cracker action, but all you find is bad-light and rain.

Pakistan batted under Flood-lights:

In the ongoing test series between England & Pakistan, Day one began nicely with Azhar Ali challenged themselves to bat under overcast conditions against a tough English bowling attack, lead by Anderson & Broad. Still they bat decently thanks to a responsible innings of Rizwan before the day called off for bad light.

Next morning, the game started after one hour of delay and Pakistan lost their ninth wicket. Rizwan soon started counter attack and smashed some Broad and Archer deliveries over the covers and in the third man region. Just after one hour of play, umpires dragged the players off because of bad light. Now, just think, if it’s too dark out there, how was Rizwan timing those 140+ balls??

England grounds can plan like Eden Gardens: 

Day 3 began with a hope of getting a full day’s play. But rain in the early morning means we will not have an on time start. Inspections in different phases of the day remain the only thing of the day before umpires called off the day because of wet outfield without a singe ball being bowled. Now, one question that I don’t understand why the ground-staffs don’t cover the whole ground like Sri Lanka or Eden Gardens.

“The covers that are used in India, at the Eden Garden are from England and using them here would have meant spending half the cost and it is also tax free” said BCCI president Sourav Ganguly during the 2019 WC. “So that when the rain stops the match can resume within 10 minutes.” Water drops did not hit the ground for almost 3 hours and still we got zero action.

The Drama of Day 4 occurs: 

Day 4 witnessed the same as the game was started after 1 and half hours and tell you what, fans needed to wait for more 7-8 minutes because there is no sawdust in the bowler’s run-up. 1 hour later play stopped due to bad light and eventually the rain arrived again in Ageas Bowl.

3hours of wait and the umpires again called off the day because the ground-staffs would require almost 3 hours to prepare the field. My math tells me that we still would got 45mins. of play and that’s so crucial after along wait. To make it more frustrating, the sun came out later in the day and under a bright blue sky, we had no play because of some old fashioned rules.

Naseer Hussain Gave a solid example:

Nasser Hussain gave a fine example of frustration in the Sky Sports. Suppose, a kid paying so much money has came to the ground to enjoy cricket. All on a sudden it becomes dark, he looks up and observes the lights are on. He will think of enjoying the game under lights and suddenly after 10 mins he watches the players going off the field. He will turn up to his father and ask the reason only to get a ridiculous answer of bad light. Lights are on and still you are going off due to bad light.

Lots of advices have come after the match with England captain Joe Root came up with an option of en early start. “In England, we may need to start early to make up time. Certainly something to look at I suppose.” Using the pink ball in the middle of a test when it’s dark can also be a way to go forward. All we want at the end of the day’s play is Cricket.

The game ended in a dull boring draw after going for almost 2 and half hours in the sunny afternoon on day 5 after going through a storm in the early morning. As a fan of test cricket and to save this form of the game, ICC should revisit those old awkward rules and discover some sensible ones.

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