Marylebone Cricket Club has announced its new code of laws for 2022 which will come into play from October 1st.
Fraser Stewart, MCC Laws Manager, said: “Since the publication of the 2017 Code of the Laws of Cricket, the game has changed in numerous ways. The 2nd edition of that Code, published in 2019, was mostly clarification and minor amendments, but the 2022 Code makes some rather bigger changes, from the way we talk about cricket to the way it’s played.
Whilst the new code of laws are being announced now, they will not come into force until October. However, in the intervening time, the relevant materials will be updated by MCC to assist with the umpire and official training on a global basis.
There are several notable changes, as below:
Law 1 – Replacement players
The introduction of a new clause, Law 1.3, explains that replacements are to be treated as if they were the player they replaced, inheriting any sanctions or dismissals that the player has done in that match.
Law 18 – Batters returning when Caught
Law 18.11 has now been changed so that, when a batter is out Caught, the new batter shall come in at the end the striker was at, i.e. to face the next ball (unless it is the end of an over).
Law 18.104.22.168 – Dead ball
The new edition sees several changes to the Dead ball Law, the most significant of which is the calling of Dead ball if either side is disadvantaged by a person, animal, or another object within the field of play.
Law 21.4 – Bowler throwing towards striker’s end before delivery
If a bowler throws the ball in an attempt to run out the striker before entering their delivery stride, it will now be called a Dead ball. This is an extremely rare scenario, which has until now been called a No ball.
Law 22.1 – Judging a Wide
Law 22.1 has been amended so that a Wide will apply to where the batter is standing, where the striker has stood at any point since the bowler began their run-up, and which would also have passed wide of the striker in a normal batting position.
Law 25.8 – striker’s right to play the ball
If the ball should land away from the pitch, the new Law 25.8 allows the striker to play the ball so long as some part of their bat or person remains within the pitch. Should they venture beyond that, the umpire will call and signal Dead ball. As recompense to the batter, any ball which would force them to leave the pitch will also be called No ball.
Laws 27.4 and 28.6 – Unfair movement by the fielding side
Until now, any member of the fielding side who moved unfairly was punished only with a ‘Dead ball’ – potentially canceling a perfectly good shot by the batter. Given the action is both unfair and deliberate, it will now see the batting side awarded 5 Penalty runs.
Law 38.3 – moving the running out of the non-striker
Law 41.16 – running out the non-striker – has been moved from Law 41 (Unfair Play) to Law 38 (Runout).
Law 41.3 – No saliva
When cricket resumed following the onset of Covid-19, playing conditions were written in most forms of the game stating that applying saliva to the ball was no longer permitted. MCC’s research found that this had little or no impact on the amount of swing the bowlers were getting. Players were using sweat to polish the ball, and this was equally effective.
The new Laws will not permit the use of saliva on the ball, which also removes any grey areas of fielders eating sugary sweets to alter their saliva to apply to the ball. Using saliva will be treated the same way as any other unfair method of changing the condition of the ball.