Major change is DRS system by ICC WHO'S HOT The contentious “umpire’s call” ruling in the Decision Review System for leg before wicket dismissals has been amended following the International Cricket Council’s annual conference, with a result that is sure to please bowlers. And Australia are set to be the first team to play under the new rules which are due to be introduced while Steve Smith’s men are playing a one-day international series in South Africa. The current protocols for overturning an “umpire’s call” verdict on an LBW decision require the ball-tracking software to rule that more than half of the ball would hit a zone that was between the middle of the off and leg stumps and below the bottom of the bails. The change will see that zone increased to the outside of the off and leg stumps, but still below the bottom of the bails. On a practical level, the change widens the zone by half a stump width in each direction. In the below example, from last year’s Ashes series, a similar scenario under the new protocols would see the original ‘not out’ decision overturned and given out, rather than using “umpire’s call”. The change will come into effect on October 1 or, according to an ICC release “from the start of any series using DRS that commences just prior to this date”. That means while the new rules will not be in use for the Qantas Tour of Sri Lanka, it is expected to be in use for Australia’s five ODI matches in South Africa which begin on September 30. That first series of the new DRS rules could also potentially see a trial for an increased use of the third umpire in ruling on no balls. The ICC will arrange a trial sometime in the next few months “to better understand whether the third umpire could use instant replays to call no balls more accurately”. “The trial is likely to be staged during one of the upcoming ODI series, and the third umpire will judge no balls within a few seconds of the ball being delivered and communicate this to the on-field umpire,” an ICC release said. In other matters, The ICC is to consider a new constitution that would usher in sweeping changes at its October meetings following “constructive discussions” at the annual conference in Edinburgh. The ICC did not reach a decision on any revamp of the existing formats, including a potential two-tier system for Test cricket, but a workshop at the governing body’s headquarters in Dubai in September will thrash out the detail. “This is an unprecedented opportunity for our sport to introduce a package of bilateral international cricket structures, which are merit and performance based, have context, enhance the value of bilateral international cricket and create a highly competitive environment for cricketers so they can provide more entertainment to spectators,” ICC Chief Executive David Richardson. “The member countries acknowledge and recognise the importance of international cricket across all its three formats and are committed to ensuring that it continues to grow in relevance and value for cricket fans around the world. “This is a complex issue on many levels but I am heartened by the progress that has been made to date and during these meetings and look forward to the next meeting in Dubai.” The constitutional changes, which would wind back many of the changes made in 2014, will be considered at the ICC Board’s October meeting. Meanwhile, the ICC will apply to have women’s cricket played at the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Durban, South Africa. The Commonwealth Games contest would be for women’s cricket only, with a potential Olympic inclusion for the sport to be discussed with International Olympic Committee officials later this year. “The Board has taken a strategic decision to support the inclusion of women’s cricket in the 2022 Commonwealth Games as it will enhance the profile of the sport and create additional exposure and experiences for female cricketers, as well as opportunities to engage with the Commonwealth Games on important social justice issues and initiatives,” ICC chairman Shashank Manohar said.