BCCI is looking to introduce its Impact Player rule, which will allow teams to use one tactical substitute in each match in the IPL, after it is smoothly implemented in the domestic men’s T20 tournament, the Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy (SMAT), which will begin on October 11. The BCCI clarified the idea of its Impact Player rule, which would let teams deploy one tactical substitute every game, in an email to its state associations.
As per ESPNcricinfo, the BCCI has been eager to introduce the tactical substitute in the IPL for the past few years but has decided it would be wise to do so in the SMAT first.
If all goes as planned, the Impact Player replacement will appear in IPL 2023.
“With the ever-growing popularity of T20 cricket, it is imperative that we look at introducing new dimensions which will make this format more attractive and interesting not only for our viewers but also the participating teams from a strategic viewpoint. The BCCI would like to introduce the concept of ‘IMPACT PLAYER’ wherein participating teams could replace one member of its playing XI during a T20 match based on the context of the game,” the BCCI’s email said.
Along with the starting eleven, teams will name four substitutes in their team sheet at the toss and use one of the four during the match.
The player will be able to bat and bowl his full allotted number of overs and can replace any starting XI player at any time up until the completion of the 14th over of either innings. The Impact Player rule has a broad tactical range, and there are no actual limitations on the role he can perform. If the team only utilises 11 batters, the Impact Player, for instance, can take the place of a hitter who has already been dismissed and still get to bat. He could also take the place of a bowler who has already bowled a few overs and still get to complete his four-over allotment.
Comparing the Impact Player rule to other tactical-substitute methods that have been tested elsewhere, it offers more tactical freedom. In the ODI Supersub system that was in existence in 2005 and 2006, the Supersub’s duty coincided with that of the player he replaced, which meant he could only bowl the remaining overs from the replacement player’s quota and could not bat if the original player had already been dismissed.
The X-Factor rule, which is in effect in the BBL in Australia, permits teams to substitute a member of their starting XI at the halfway point of the first innings (the ten-over mark in a complete T20 game), provided that the replacement player has not yet batted or bowled more than one over.
The regulation might lessen the effect of the toss. For instance, a team has the chance to improve its bowling arsenal for the challenge of bowling second when it loses the toss and the dew settles in. Similar to this, the club hitting second may add a batter to its lineup if the pitch is turning square. The decision will also assist teams in minimising the effects of a player suffering an injury during the contest.
With two exceptions: if a batting side sends in the Impact Player at the fall of a wicket or if the fielding team substitutes the Impact Player for an injured fielder in the middle of an over, the Impact Player can only be introduced at the end of an over and not during it.
The player who was replaced cannot play again, not even as a replacement outfield.
A bowler who has bowled two beamers in an over and is suspended can be substituted by the Impact Player, but that player is not permitted to bowl.
Will shortened games permit teams to use an Impact Player?
Yes, but not if the contest is cut short to fewer than 10 overs on each side due to a delayed start. With a sliding cut-off point, the Impact Player can be introduced if the planned number of overs each inning is greater than ten. For instance, in a game of 17 overs on each side, the Impact Player may enter the field before the 13th over of either inning has been completed. He can enter before the end of the ninth over in an 11-overs-aside match.
Regardless of how many overs are reduced, both teams can deploy an Impact Player if the game starts as a full T20 game and the side batting first has faced at least 10 overs when play is stopped.
The second team may still use its Impact Player if the match is altered so that one team has already used its Impact Player but the second innings is still longer than ten overs, for example, before the end of the seventh over in a nine-over innings or before the end of the third over in a five-over inning.
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