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Law 19 Changes
Changes to the Law are in italics
19.3. Scoring a boundary
(a) A boundary shall be scored and signalled by the bowler’s end umpire whenever, while the ball is in play, in his opinion,
(i) the ball touches the boundary, or is grounded beyond the boundary.
(ii) a fielder with some part of his person in contact with the ball, touches the boundary or has some part of his person grounded beyond the boundary.
(iii) the ball, having crossed the boundary in the air, is first touched by a fielder who has not satisfied the conditions in 4(i) below.
(b) The phrases ‘touches the boundary’ and ‘touching the boundary’ shall mean contact with
either (i) the boundary edge as defined in 2 above
or (ii) any person or obstacle within the field of play which has been designated a boundary by the umpires before the toss.
(c) The phrase ‘grounded beyond the boundary’ shall mean contact with
either (i) any part of a line or solid object marking the boundary except the boundary edge
or (ii) the ground beyond the boundary edge
or (iii) any object in contact with the ground beyond the boundary edge.
19.4. Ball beyond the boundary
After it has crossed the boundary in the air, a ball may be caught, subject to the provisions of Law 32, or fielded provided that
(i) the first contact with the ball is by a fielder, not touching or grounded beyond the boundary, who has some part of his person grounded within the boundary or whose final contact with the ground before touching the ball was entirely within the boundary.
Any fielder subsequently touching the ball is not subject to this restriction.
(ii) neither the ball, nor any fielder in contact with the ball touches, or is grounded beyond, the boundary at any time during the act of making the catch or of fielding the ball.
The act of making the catch, or of fielding the ball, shall start from the time when the ball first comes into contact with some part of a fielder’s person and shall end when a fielder obtains complete control both over the ball and over his own movement.
19.5. Runs allowed for boundaries
(a) Before the toss the umpires shall agree with both captains the runs to be allowed for boundaries. In deciding the allowances the umpires and captains shall be guided by the prevailing custom of the ground.
(b) Unless agreed differently under (a) above, the allowances for boundaries shall be 6 runs if the ball having been struck by the bat pitches beyond the boundary, but otherwise 4 runs. These shall be described as a Boundary 6 and a Boundary 4 respectively, although the number of runs awarded may not be 6 or 4 if other allowances have been agreed under (a) above.
These allowances shall still apply even though the ball has previously touched a fielder. See also (c) below.
(c) A Boundary 6 will be scored if and only if the ball has been struck by the bat and pitches beyond the boundary. The ball is to be regarded as pitching beyond the boundary even though before it has pitched, a fielder
(i) catches it within the boundary but either has some part of his person touching the boundary or grounded beyond the boundary when he catches the ball or, after catching it, subsequently touches the boundary or grounds some part of his person beyond the boundary while carrying the ball but before completing the catch. See Law 32 (Caught).
ii) comes into contact with the ball in the circumstances of 3a (iii) above.
(d) The award for all other boundaries scored under 3 above, for which either the ball was not struck by the bat or did not pitch beyond the boundary as defined above, will be a Boundary 4, including a case under 3(a)(iii) when the ball has pitched within the boundary before contact with the fielder.
Reason for change
Law 19.3 (Scoring a boundary) and Law 19.4 (Ball beyond the boundary) – these Laws have been amended to give additional clarity to the definition of when the ball has crossed the boundary. It particularly clarifies the position when fielders work as a team for a piece of fielding on the boundary.
Law 19.5 (Runs allowed for boundaries) – this Law has been reworded in order to clarify that it is possible for a different number of runs to be agreed at the toss for the scoring of boundaries, and that references to the two types of boundaries scored are Boundary 4 and Boundary 6, even if four or six runs are not to be scored from them.
Interpretation & application
There has been no change in the definition of a boundary, but the wording relating to the scoring of runs has been set out in more precise detail.
It has always been true that Boundary 6 and Boundary 4 describe the two types of boundary but that the runs for them may be agreed as different from 6 and 4. This principle has now been applied to Law 19.5(c). If a fielder is grounded on, is beyond, or carries the ball over the boundary before completing the act of catching or fielding the ball, then the batting side will be awarded a Boundary 6 or a Boundary 4, that is to say the number of runs agreed for those sorts of boundaries.
There is no other basic change to this Law except to add the penalty. If the conditions laid down for taking the ball, by catching it or fielding it, after it has crossed the boundary in the air, are not satisfied then a boundary will be scored, either a Boundary 4 or a Boundary 6 according to circumstances.
In particular, the wording of section 5(c) has been clarified to emphasise that, when fielding or catching a ball after it has crossed the boundary in the air, the first fielder to touch the ball must not only have some part of his person in contact with the ground within the boundary, but must have no part grounded on or beyond the boundary (or he must have jumped up from such a position).
A second fielder making contact with the ball after a team-mate has already touched it may, however, jump up from a position beyond the boundary on the basis that it is likely to be in reaction to the deflection from his colleague.
Example of the ball crossing the Boundary
Example of a catch near the boundary (1)
Example of a catch near the boundary (2)