The International Cricket Council (ICC) has confirmed preliminary changes to its rules, including the ban on the use of saliva to shine the ball and allow home referees in international series.
ICC Confirmed Interim Changes
The ICC Chief Executives’ Committee (CEC) ratified recommendations from the Anil Kumble-led Cricket Committee to mitigate the risks of the COVID-19 virus and to protect the safety of players and match officials if cricket is resumed.
COVID-19 replacements: Teams may replace players who experience symptoms of COVID-19 during a test game. In accordance with the concussion replacement, the Match Referee approves the closest replacement on a comparable basis.
However, the regulation for the replacement of COVID-19 does not apply to ODIs and T20Is.
Ban on applying saliva to the ball: players must not use saliva to shine the ball. If a player applies saliva to the ball, the referees will handle the situation with some leniency during an initial adjustment phase for the players, but subsequent instances will result in the team receiving a warning.
A team can receive up to two warnings per innings, but repeated use of saliva on the ball results in a 5-run penalty for the batting team. Whenever saliva is applied to the ball, the referees are instructed to clean the ball before the game starts again.
Non-neutral referees: Due to the current logistical challenges when traveling internationally, the obligation to appoint neutral referees is temporarily being removed from the playing conditions for all international formats. The ICC can appoint local game officers from the Emirates ICC Elite Panel of Match Officials and the Emirates ICC International Panel of Match Officials.
Additional DRS checks: The KEK has also confirmed an additional unsuccessful DRS check for every team in every inning of a game, taking into account that sometimes less experienced referees are on duty. This increases the number of unsuccessful appeals per innings for each team to three for tests and two for white-ball formats.
The ICC Cricket Operations team assists match referees in processing violations of the Code of Conduct, and a neutral elite panel match referee remotely conducts each hearing via video link.
An earlier media release on the recommendations of the Cricket Committee and details on the appointment of match officers can be found here.
Additional logo allowed: In the meantime, the KEK has also approved a relaxation of the rules for clothing logos for the next 12 months.
A logo no larger than 32 square inches may be affixed to the chest of the test game shirt and sweater in addition to the other three permitted logos. From now on, logos on chests are only allowed in ODIs and T20Is.