The International Cricket Council (ICC) has said that there will be no change in the follow-on rule if the opening day of the ICC World Test Championship (WTC) final between India and New Zealand in Southampton is wiped out.
In usual Test matches, the margin of lead needed to enforce a follow-on is reduced from 200 to 150 runs if the opening day’s play is washed out. However, with a reserve day available, this rule will not come into play in the WTC final, according to a report in Cricbuzz.
ICC clarifies follow-on rule for World Test Championship final
ICC has already set aside a reserve day (June 23) for the ICC World Test Championship scheduled to take place between June 18-22. The reserve day in the World Test Championship final will only be used to “ensure five full days of play”. In simple words, it will only be used if lost overs (due to any reason) won’t be completed in the first five days.
The ICC playing conditions (clause 14) states: “14.1.1: The side which bats first and leads by at least 200 runs shall have the option of requiring the other side to follow their innings. 14.1.2 The same option shall be available in matches of shorter duration with the minimum leads as follows: – 150 runs in a match of 3 or 4 days; – 100 runs in a 2-day match; – 75 runs in a 1-day match.”
However, in case of the World Test Championship final, a lead of 200 runs to enforce a follow-on will apply even if the first day’s play is washed out. That is because the match will remain a five-day affair even if it begins on the second day. In case, the second day’s play is also washed out, the follow-on rule will then change to 150 runs.
ICC announced its playing conditions for the WTC final last month. Apart from reserve day, there will be modified DRS and short-run rules and player review changes in accordance with changes in international playing conditions.