Cricket to trial red cards during matches


Red cards and sin bins are among the new on-field sanctions set to be trialled in cricket as the sport attempts to curb bad player behaviour.

The Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC), which oversees the laws of the game, announced the trial on Tuesday, though it will not be seen in top-level cricket.

Instead, leagues, schools and MCC Universities in the United Kingdom will be the first to take part amid growing concerns from umpires about poor on-field behaviour after five matches in the country had to be abandoned due to violence.

The MCC - using the England and Wales Cricket Board's code of conduct as a guide in the trial - have put forward new rules which could see players sent off under a level four offence for threatening an umpire, physically assaulting someone at the ground, engaging in an act of violence on the field of play or using offensive language deemed racist or sexist.

A level three offence could see a player sin-binned for as long as 10 overs if he/she intimidates an umpire.

The aforementioned offences would also constitute a five-run penalty.

Five-run penalties would also be handed out for bowlers throwing the ball at opposition batsmen, players caught swearing, serious dissent, time wasting and even excessive appealing.

"There is clear evidence, both anecdotally and through increased reports via leagues that the standards of player behaviour on the cricket field are declining worldwide," said the MCC.

"Whilst the majority of cricket is played in a competitive but fair spirit, there are some players, or even teams, whose behaviour is below what is expected for cricket."