Updated November 26, 2015 18:45:29

Cricket is not the game it after was, and players from past generations might shake their heads at the concept of playing a Test match beneath lights in Adelaide with a pink ball.

Whilst the aim of the game – to score runs and take wickets – is still the same, the way it is played, the format, the equipment, the way it is officiated and even the ball that is used have all changed.

Take a look at some of the innovations more than past decades that have changed the game.

By Andrew McGarry

Covered pitches

There have been many modifications which have benefited batsmen, to the aggravation of the bowling fraternity – 1 of the largest was the introduction of covered pitches during the 1960s.

Before then, with pitches left open to the components, overnight rain would leave the classic “sticky” wicket – as the pitch dried, there were opportunities for slow bowlers to put batsmen below stress as they struggled to function out which way the ball was turning.

The likes of England’s Derek Underwood had been masters on sticky wickets, capable of causing complete-scale collapses in opposition batting line-ups in rapid time.

One of the most novel responses to a sticky wicket came from an Australian side in an Ashes Test against England in Melbourne in 1937.

Australia declared at 9 for 200, just before Morris Sievers and Bill O’Reilly combined to skittle England for 76.

The hosts then decided to reverse the order, with O’Reilly and Chuck Fleetwood-Smith opening the batting.

They each created ducks, but the bowlers protected the batsmen extended enough for the pitch to dry out, then Don Bradman came out at quantity seven and made 270 as Australia went on to win the Test by 365 runs.

Right after the change, pitches became much more standardised across the planet, despite the fact that differences still remained among countries and even person venues within nations, such as the traditional quickly, bouncy pitch at the WACA or the low and slow pitches on the subcontinent.

Restricted overs cricket

English county cricket had been playing standard one-day games – rather than the four or five-day range – in a league format since the early 1960s, but the huge adjust came in 1971, when Australia played an England MCC side at the MCG in 1971.

The 40-over match saw the vacationers make 190 off 39.four overs, while Australia produced the runs with 5 wickets down and five.two overs to spare.

A philosophical distinction appeared straight away, with the English team accumulating their score mainly in singles and twos (with seven fours).

The Australians, in contrast, hammered 17 fours and a six in their innings.

The format took off four years later, when the inaugural Planet Cup (with games played over 60 overs) was held in England, with West Indies beating Australia by 17 runs in the final.

From the fourth edition of the tournament in 1987, the Planet Cup was played over 50 overs, which became the common for most restricted overs matches until the advent of Twenty20 cricket.

Globe Series Cricket

World Series Cricket was an argument more than broadcasting rights which turned into a battle for the direction of the game, with the traditionalists of the ACB and the ICC facing off against media magnate Kerry Packer’s plans to modernise cricket.

There had been “Supertests”, as a extended-form game pitted the WSC Australian XI against West Indies and the Rest of the World, but it was the restricted more than version that became recognized as the “pyjama game” – for the players wearing vivid colours as an alternative of the classic white – that genuinely took off.

The uniforms, the concentrate on gladiatorial quickly bowling, playing under floodlights with a white ball and the use of effects microphones and on-screen Tv graphics had been all innovations that grabbed people’s interest.

Then there were memorable photos, such as England’s Dennis Amiss walking out to bat with a modified motorcycle helmet in an attempt to shield himself against the pacemen.

Globe Series Cricket popularised the day-night format for 1-day games, and revolutionised Television coverage of cricket.

The influx of cash turned cricketers into complete-time experts, placing a greater emphasis on fitness and producing protective helmets for batsmen the norm.

The format encouraged a much more attacking mindset, and a push to speed up the game, which arguably led to the advent of Twenty20.

Referred choices

Different sports have produced use of technological advances to aid referees and umpires get decisions appropriate for the duration of games.

The last decade has seen this changing technology utilised in cricket. It started off with ball-tracking technology that had initial been employed in tennis in 2006.

The Hawk Eye system used numerous cameras, with the vision combined to produce a projection of the ball’s trajectory.

It was initial used by the ICC in cricket as the Selection Assessment Method (DRS) on a trial basis in 2008-09 to refer decisions to a third umpire more than LBW decisions, to decide if the ball pitched in line, hit the batsman’s leg in line and whether or not it would have hit the stumps.

A second tool, the Snickometer or “Snicko” had earlier been developed in England for tv purposes making use of noises and video to figure out regardless of whether a ball had hit a batsman’s edge – but it was not utilized in DRS when it was first introduced.

The other element of technologies was Hot Spot, which was initially began in France prior to becoming created for tv in Australia – the infra-red technique determines if the ball hits the bat or pad in appeals for LBWs and catches.

Eventually, the 3 elements were combined to create the newest edition of DRS – teams have a set number of challenges per innings as the batting or bowling side.

DRS has been controversial, and some nations such as India refuse to agree to play below the method.

Bigger bats

The domination of bat more than ball has been a a lot-commented phenomenon in current years, and a single of the crucial perceived factors for this is the adjustments to bats.

The rules of cricket give that a bat can be no wider than four.25 inches (10.8cm) and no longer than 38 inches (96.5cm).

However, a report final year by Imperial College London, commissioned by the MCC, discovered that the length and thickness of bats had improved more than time.

This resulted in a “significantly higher moment of inertia (choose-up weight)” and much better ‘sweet spot’ traits for newer bats.

“This offers a considerable overall performance advantage,” the report located.

Coupled with more attacking batting and (some) smaller sized boundaries, the alterations to bats have been seen as one particular cause for larger and record scores, such as the quickest ODI century (31 balls by AB de Villiers) and the highest score in ODI cricket (264 off 173 balls by Rohit Sharma).


It started out as somewhat of a desperation move by the England and Wales Cricket Board, but 12 years on, Twenty20 has taken over the game of cricket in numerous respects.

The ECB was looking for a shortened type of the game to attract a younger audience and stem a severe decline in crowd numbers for nation cricket.

They came up with a 20-overs a side game with substantial alterations, such as fielding restrictions, batting and bowling powerplays, the “free-hit” right after a no-ball for overstepping.

In all respects it was a departure from ‘normal’ cricket, with batsmen coming off a bench rather than out of a pavilion, and emerging to the sound of a loud rock song as a private theme tune.

Regardless of issues from traditionalists, the format took off, and swiftly spread to the international level.

Many believe the victory of India in the inaugural Planet Twenty20 final in South Africa in 2007 was a turning point – it led to the industrial juggernaut of the IPL, and leagues in a lot more than a dozen nations about the globe.

Some people consider that the pendulum has swung as well far, as the monetary achievement of cricket internationally seems tied to much more and much more T20 matches.

But it has also led to a significantly much more attacking attitude to cricket, and new strokes such as the ramp shot, the switch hit and other people.

Day-night Test with pink ball

Traditionally, the cricket ball was red, allowing batsmen and fielders to see the ball.

When World Series Cricket began, the introduction of day-evening cricket led to the use of a white ball and a black sight screen.

As pressure on Test cricket elevated due to the reputation of T20, authorities had been moving towards the concept of a trial day-night Test match.

To this end, versions of pink balls had been trialled as far back as 2008, in a Queensland Girls v Western Australia Women match in Brisbane.

In 2010, the trials stepped up a notch, with pink balls utilised for the first time in day-nighters in Caribbean first-class cricket, the IPL (in nets) and Abu Dhabi.

As Kookaburra continued to tinker with the pink ball prototype, it was trialled in day-evening Sheffield Shield matches.

Now, seven years after its debut, the pink ball is about to be utilized for the 1st time in a day-evening Test match among Australia and New Zealand at Adelaide Oval.

Topics: cricket, sport

Very first posted November 26, 2015 18:39:05

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