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ECB bans usage of smartwatch on the field

In 2018, there was an instance when the anti-corruption unit had asked Asad Shafiq and Hasan Ali from Pakistan not to wear smart-watches during the Lord's Test.

Joe Root of England (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

The England Cricket Board (ECB) earlier used to allow the players to wear smartwatches in the games as long as the communication and data transmission facilities were off during the televised games. Now, they have banned players from wearing customized timepiece during the games. They also look pretty strict over the same as it comes into the act with immediate effect.

Earlier, ECB had introduced it as one of the ways to communicate with the players on and off the field. Once Matt Parkinson, the spinner from Lancashire threw light on the usage of smartwatches saying that he came to know about his maiden call-up through a notification on his teammate’s smart-watch back in 2019.

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ECB takes a strong step over the usage of smart-watches 

As per the reports, now there are large number of games that are telecast live across the globe due to the growth of live streaming services.  So, the board has decided to tighten the rules and completely ban players from wearing timepiece in the games that will be televised. Moreover, this device will be only allowed to wear in the players’ and match official areas that too in the matches which will not get live-streamed.

“But with the vast majority of fixtures now available to watch live worldwide thanks to the growth of live-streaming services in the county game, the regulations have been tightened, meaning that smartwatches are completely banned in televised games and are permitted in the players’ and match officials’ areas (dressing rooms, balconies, dugouts) only in non-televised games,” a report in ESPNCricinfo said.

ECB in their statement said that they review anti-corruption rules annually. It is usually done to protect the game from any type of external threats that can question the integrity of the sports. “We review the anti-corruption codes and PMOA minimum standards on a yearly basis so that they remain relevant to the current threats and risks to cricket,” an ECB spokesperson said.

In 2018, there was an instance when the anti-corruption unit asked Asad Shafiq and Hasan Ali from Pakistan not to wear smart-watches during the Lord’s Test.

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