SUSSEX MEN'S MATCH RULES
These rules have been designed to both ensure continuity in a competition that relies heavily upon self-officiating and to govern a competition that is intended to increase participation for keen cricketers at a particular level in our region. We are all responsible for upholding these and ensuring both their relevance and purpose. Your team's commitment to this is both vital and expected.
Matches should be played to the standard rules of cricket with the following amendments specific to this competition:
- SX-MM.1 - Each match will commence at 18:00 promptly so as to ensure as much daylight as possible is available throughout, whilst not impacting too adversely upon the working day. Both sides should be ready to start play at this time even if one or both sides are depleted due to late arrivals. Late arriving players shall be permitted to participate as soon as they are ready to enter the field of play, but this should result in a material delay of the game.
- SX-MM.2 - Apart from at Finals' Days, all matches are to be officiated through a combination of the two competing club’s members, the details of which are to be agreed upon by the two captains prior to the start of the match. Teams are REQUIRED to ensure that anyone umpiring at the standing end in a Slam match has completed the free, online Basics Of Umpiring course from The ECB, which is available at https://basicsofumpiring.ecb.co.uk . Note this is now a MANDATORY requirement. Any individual who has completed this course has the right to officiate at the standing end instead of anyone who has NOT completed this course (or higher level), regardless of which team they are associated with. For the avoidance of doubt, this requirement does NOT currently apply to whoever officiates at square leg.
- SX-MM.3 - Each innings shall consist of 20 overs, which in turn shall consist of 6 deliveries. The first half of the allotted overs shall be bowled from the same end, with the 2 batsmen changing ends at the end of each over. The second half of the allotted overs shall all be bowled from the opposite end, meaning that the batsman shall not be required to change ends at the same time that the bowling changes ends. This is decided in an effort to reduce the amount of time lost to the changing of ends after each over. For the avoidance of doubt, if there are two standing umpires, they shall NOT change ends at any stage during the innings.
- SX-MM.4 - For each match, both teams are to provide AT LEAST 2 PINK, match standard, 5.5oz balls. For each of a teams' first SIX matches in The Slam each year at least one ball should be new. The other ball (or both balls from the 7th game onwards) need not be brand new, but should be in reasonable condition and agreed upon by both Captains prior to the start of the match. All 4 of the agreed balls for each match should be readily available throughout the match and where searching for a ball leads to an extensive delay, one of the alternate balls should be utilised whilst members of the BATTING TEAM search for any missing balls. Additional guidance in relation to match balls can be found HERE.
- SX-MM.5 - Batsmen are required to retire (not out) the first time the ball is declared dead after that batsman passes 50 runs. This is applicable at all stages of the competition and the batsman is only allowed to return once the remaining wickets in their team’s innings have been taken.
- SX-MM.6 - For an innings lasting between 16 and 20 overs each bowler is limited to bowling no more than 4 overs. For an innings lasting between 11 and 15 overs each bowler is limited to bowling no more than 3 overs. For an innings lasting between 6 and 10 overs each bowler is limited to bowling no more than 2 overs. For an innings lasting 5 overs, each bowler is limited to bowling no more than 1 over. In all instances at least 5 bowlers are required to be used.
- SX-MM.7a - The judgement of a wide on the ‘off side’ should be in line with that used in other forms of cricket.
- SX-MM.7b - In the MEN'S CUP ONLY, a wide delivery shall be called when a delivery passes, without any contact to the batsman or their equipment, down the batsman’s ‘leg side’ to whatever degree, so long as the batsman has not moved after the point of delivery to deliberately manufacture a wide delivery. This ruling is mandatory and CANNOT be opted out of through agreement between the two competing sides.
- SX-MM.7c - In the MEN's PLATE ONLY, a 'leg side' wide delivery shall only be called if the delivery is (in the opinion of the umpire) outside the reasonable reach of the batsman when assessing their stance at the point of the delivery being released by the bowler. For avoidance of doubt, the batsman is unable to 'manufacture' a wide through stepping away from the delivery. This ruling is mandatory and CANNOT be opted out of through agreement between the two competing sides.
- SX-MM.8 - Bowlers shall be limited to a maximum of ten yards for their ‘run-up’. The home team shall provide a marker to clearly show this maximum distance. Should a delivery be completed following a ‘run-up’ materially exceeding this distance then the umpire should declare a no-ball and the consequences detailed in SX-MM.11, SX-MM.12 and SX-MM.13 should follow.
This ruling is to be enforced by the two umpires and any infringement can be called by either. In the interests of the spirit of the competition it is suggested that a warning be issued for the first infringement rather than resort to the immediate calling of a ‘no ball’.
For the avoidance of doubt, a bowler’s ‘run-up’ is their direct & continuous approach to their point of delivery and is not related to the speed in which it is conducted.
Teams should appreciate that the inclusion of this ruling is to help ensure the match as a whole is conducted in the best possible light conditions.
- SX-MM.9 - In all but the last over of each innings a wide delivery or a no ball shall incur TWO extra runs (in addition to whatever is achieved through runs following the delivery) but an extra delivery will NOT be required.
- SX-MM.10 - In the final over of each innings a wide delivery or a no-ball shall STILL incur TWO extra runs (in addition to whatever is achieved through runs following the delivery) and an extra delivery WILL be required.
- SX-MM.11 - The delivery immediately following a no ball (in whatever form it takes and at any stage in the match) shall be a ‘free hit’ whereby the batsman facing the next delivery can only be dismissed by run out, handling the ball, hitting the ball twice or obstructing the field.
- SX-MM.12 - Should an illegal delivery take place on the final ball of an over (except the final over of the innings) then the ‘free hit’ shall occur on the first delivery of the next over, regardless of the fact that the subsequent delivery will be made by a bowler different to that who committed the offence. Should the offence occur on the final ball of the innings then an extra delivery shall be bowled by that bowler immediately as per SY-MM.10.
- SX-MM.13 - A ‘free hit’ shall be signalled by the umpire through a one-handed, flat, circular motion above their head towards the scorers, and the fielding team shall not be permitted to materially alter the set-up of their field to that which was set for the previous (illegal) delivery. Should the ‘free hit’ delivery be to a batsman of an alternate ‘handedness’, or should it represent the start of a new over, then the field can be materially altered.
- SX-MM.14a - The home team shall ensure that where available a ring of WHITE marker discs shall be placed to form a 'fielding ring' that is formed from circles with radii of between 20 and 25 metres from the centre stump at each end of the wicket.
- SX-MM.14b.i - During the first SIX overs of each innings the fielding team shall not be permitted to have any LESS than SEVEN (excluding the bowler and the wicketkeeper) within the 'fielding ring' at the moment that a ball is bowled. This period is to be known as the POWERPLAY. Should a ball be bowled when less than SEVEN fielders (excluding the bowler and the wicketkeeper) are within the 'fielding ring' then either umpire should declare a no-ball and the consequences detailed in SY-MM.11, SY-MM.12 and SY-MM.13 should follow.
- SX-MM.14b.ii - Where a 'fielding ring' cannot be provided then during the first SIX overs of each innings the fielding team shall not be permitted to have any more than TWO fielders in the immediate vicinity of the boundary at the moment that the ball is bowled instead, with any transgression to be managed as per rule SY-MM.14b.i.
- SX-MM.14b.iii - Where an innings is shortened for whatever reason the Powerplay should be reduced by the same ratio as the whole innings, but always rounded UP to the nearest full over where necessary. This should be mutually agreed by both captains prior to the commencement of any period of play where a Powerplay will become involved.
- SX-MM.14b.iv - The conclusion of the Powerplay shall be signalled by the umpire through a one-handed, vertical, circular motion in front of their body towards the scorers.
- SX-MM.14c.i - For the remainder of each innings in The Men's Cup, and for the duration of each innings in The Men's Plate, the fielding team shall not be permitted to have any LESS than FOUR (excluding the bowler and the wicketkeeper) within the 'fielding ring' at the moment that a ball is bowled. Should a ball be bowled when less than FOUR fielders (excluding the bowler and the wicketkeeper) are within the 'fielding ring' then either umpire should declare a no-ball and the consequences detailed in SX-MM.11, SX-MM.12 and SX-MM.13 should follow.
- SX-MM.14c.ii - Where a 'fielding ring' cannot be provided then the fielding team shall not be permitted to have any more than FIVE fielders in the immediate vicinity of the boundary at the moment that the ball is bowled instead, with any transgression to be managed as per rule SX-MM.14c.i.
- SX-MM.14d - Whenever the fielding team does not have 11 players on the field the number of fielders permitted outside of the fielding ring (or within the vicinity of the boundary if no fielding ring is provided) for BOTH SY-MM.14b and SY-MM.14c shall be reduced by the number of total fielders that the fielding team is short of at that time. e.g. if the fielding team only has NINE players on the field then they are only permitted to have THREE fielders outside the fielding ring (or within the vicinity of the boundary).
This ruling is to be policed by both umpires and any infringement can be called by either. In the interest of the spirit of the competition it is suggested that a warning be issued on the first occasion where it is dubious as to whether or not the fielding team is adhering to this rule rather than resort to the immediate calling of a 'no ball'. This provides the Captain with the opportunity to rectify any potential oversight and ensure clarity in his/her field setting from that point onwards.
Teams and their Captains should be mindful of the fact that matches are not independently officiated and as such this rule should be adhered to with the spirit in which the competition is intended to be played.