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Law 5 changes - The ball

Law 5

Changes | Reason for change | Interpretation & Application


Changes to the Law are in italics

5.4.    New ball in match of more than one day’s duration

In a match of more than one day’s duration, the captain of the fielding side may demand a new ball when the number of overs, excluding any part overs, bowled with the old one is equal to or greater than the prescribed number of overs.  The Governing Body responsible for the match concerned shall decide the number of overs applicable in that match.  This number shall not be less than 75 overs.

The umpire shall inform the other umpire and indicate to the batsmen and the scorers whenever a new ball is taken into play.

Reason for changes

The first change is to give clarity to the rare occasion when the third new ball may be taken. 

The second change confirms that it is now the Governing Body for the match which will decide what the minimum is, not the Governing Body for the country.

Interpretation & application

If a new ball is taken in mid-over – say after 76.4 overs, i.e. during the 77th over – then the counting of overs before the next new ball can be taken must start with the next whole over, the 78th, not the 77th, as only part of that over (the last two balls in this example) is with the new ball. 

In this example, if the minimum is 75 overs, then the next new ball will not be available until the start of the 153rd over.

Changes to the Law are in italics

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