How will the ten ball overs pan out?
However, it's a month since the announcement and neither cricket fans nor the board know exactly how the showpiece extended over will unfold.
by Sai Author
Published - May 15, 2018 9:34 pm | Updated - May 16, 2018 3:32 pm
In an attempt to appeal to “a new, younger audience” the England Cricket Board (ECB) have tried to simplify the ever-popular T20 format with the newly-proposed 100-ball format. Innings will be made up of 15 regular overs and conclude with a 10-ball over.
However, it’s a month since the announcement and neither cricket fans nor the board know exactly how the showpiece extended over will unfold. With the format in danger of going from “The Hundred” to zero, real quick, we take a look at some of the possible stipulations (some more realistic than others) for the intriguing 10-ball over.
Now although ten deliveries doesn’t seem like many, for the likes of Wahab Riaz and Pat Cummins, steaming in and bowling ten consecutive 90mph yorkers, this is a huge ask. So to make sure the bowlers don’t burn themselves out, allowing the captain to select two or three of his best and then rotate between them during the over will keep things exciting.
This chopping and changing, however, is likely to slow things down, as a change of bowler will bring a change of field. Perhaps introducing a time limit on these bowler rotations would fit the bill -though, this may be slightly gimmicky. But the image of a panicking captain screaming at his fielder to get down to third man before they’re hit with penalty runs is one that should get this new audience on their feet.
Spin to win
If we’re going with a solitary bowler, then it only makes sense for the captain to be forced to bring on a spinner. The facing batsmen will be looking to clear ropes on every delivery, so expect googlies and doosras galore as the best spinners in the game pull out all the tricks to make sure they aren’t smashed for 50 runs.
With Middlesex spinner Ollie Rayner (pictured) labelling the 100-ball format as a “hoax”, perhaps the opportunity to take centre stage in the final over would win him over. Rayner’s opinion will be highly regarded, too, as his side are second-favourites for the County Championship Div Two at 4/1 with William Hill. That said, the Englishman might yet come round to see the potential for drama and glory.
Everybody has a bowl
10 balls, 10 players (excluding the wicket-keeper), this one makes mathematical sense and would certainly throw up some unforgettable moments. Again, it completely contradicts the idea of making the game quicker to maintain interest on those sweaty summer evenings, but the thought of top-order batsmen having their 45mph arm balls smashed into the car park makes up for it.
The Indian Premier League has recently introduced virtual reality streaming, allowing fans to get a 360-degree view of the coverage and feel closer to the action. But what if the ECB were to go one better? What if “The Hundred” allowed fans to select the bowler whom they feel should step up for the 10-ball over? In true Who Wants To Be A Millionaire manner, fans could use a keypad to vote for who’s sent in to bowl the 10-ball extravaganza. It might seem far-fetched but stranger things have happened.