Slow over rate rule is not in the best interests of cricket

Dear Editor,

Not long ago Zimbabwe went to play cricket in Pakistan, in which country international cricket had not been played for perhaps a decade prior to Zimbabwe`s visit. Elton Chigumbura was the captain, and the best and most exciting Zimbabwean cricketer. In the very first match of the tour the slow over rate rule was violated by Zimbabwe. The captain was suspended for the next two matches, in which Zimbabwe naturally performed worse than in the first match. Pakistani fans and other international fans were deprived of the privilege of seeing the cricketer they wanted to see most.

The West Indies team touring New Zealand is a team of youthful cricketers who West Indians, and if you believe, foreign commentators, and cricket enthusiasts in other countries, want to see improve and become more competitive. There are only two 5 day matches scheduled. Jason Holder is the young West Indian captain and the team`s best all-rounder.  In the first match the West Indies violated the slow over rate rule. He is not playing in the second match.

Most people accept the notion that leaders should generally take responsibility for the actions of those under their charge. What the penalty for violations of the rules should be elicits different responses. It is clear that this rule is not in the best interests of the game as it penalises even those who have done nothing wrong,  the fans, unnecessarily weakens one team, and in the process would tend to reduce attendance. There are other forms of punishment. As a kid we used an expression that defines international cricket administrators precisely. It is ‘hard-headed’, which sounds more respectful than stupid.

Yours faithfully,

Romain Pitt

Toronto

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