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Introduction - MCC and the Laws of Cricket

One of MCC’s most important roles, which it has carried out since the Club’s formation in 1787, is its custodianship of the Laws of Cricket.

Although the International Cricket Council is the global Governing Body for cricket, it still relies on MCC to write and interpret the Laws of Cricket, which are applicable from the village green to the Test arena.

MCC's Laws sub-committee are responsible for the debating, decision making and drafting of the Laws, which are - in turn - passed by MCC's Main Committee, retaining a robust and measured decision-making process.

Certain levels of cricket are subject to playing regulations, which may create subtle differences to the Laws themselves. This is most high profile at international level, where the ICC applies playing conditions which can cause some confusion at lower levels of the game.

On 1 October 2013, a new edition of the Laws of Cricket came into force. This edition, known as the 2000 Code 5th Edition – 2013, is displayed on this website and is the most up to date version, for use in all competitions.

The 5th Edition does contain some significant changes from the 4th Edition - which are detailed and explained here.

Additionally, there is a comprehensive Laws in Action section, which provides many interpretations on some of the more complicated areas of the Laws.

This website also displays regular blogs from the Club's Laws Department, clarifying issues which crop-up in the game from the international arena to the playground.

Since the introduction of the 2000 Code, the Spirit of Cricket Preamble has been an important feature, providing the context in which the game is intended to be played.

Learn more about the Spirit of Cricket and MCC’s initiatives to promote it. The players, umpires and scorers in a game of cricket may be of either gender and the Laws apply equally to both.

The use, throughout the text, of pronouns indicating the male gender is purely for brevity. Except where specifically stated otherwise, every provision of the Laws is to be read as applying to women & girls equally as to men and boys.

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