This article first appeared on the BBC's 606 forum on the 1st of February 2009.
The Australian cricket team’s introduction of a new method of dismissal (“bowled – wicketkeeper assisted”) claimed it’s first victim today when New Zealand batsman Neil Broom was dismissed by Australian bowler Michael Clarke after Australian keeper Brad Haddin broke the stumps before the ball had reached them.
“This is an exciting development in cricket” enthused Australian captain Ricky Ponting, “too many of the recent developments in cricket have favoured the batsman and it is good to test out some methods of redressing this balance. We tried something similar last year with the “one hand-one bounce” rule when India toured, but we are hopeful this new one will be more popular”.
Clarke outlined one of the other benefits of the new rule when he stated “the keeper can now also attempt to collect the ball in front of the stumps. This will help can cut down the time between deliveries which will be a boost for our over-rates which have been a little slow over recent months”.
When questioned about the legality of the new development, particularly in light of it not being officially approved prior to the game commencing, Ponting said “If the ICC overrule the umpire’s decision then that’s their call, but we are pretty confident they’ll do a u-turn in about six months and award the wicket back to us.”