View Full Version : Modern Measures to Safeguard Cricket Pitch

January 29, 2005, 04:48 PM
For many years, we have been bothered by our inability to keep the cricket pitch worthy of ensued competition despite best efforts by pitch curators, umpires and referees.

During a match, both natural and deliberate interventions deteriorate the cricket pitch, be it bowler’s footmarks or locus of runners between the wickets, which is further compounded by left and right-handed players.

For a match being played on a doctored or susceptible pitch, either toss or edaphic advantage to a particular team becomes the deciding factor rather than the better performance or deserving team.
No doubt, umpires do keep strict guard against such deliberate attempts, yet their interference either results in bitter taste or banning of key players trying individual or ulterior performances. Surely, the orthodox cricketers may say that “capability to play on a susceptible/ deteriorating pitch” is also part of the game, yet we all must attempt to put a block to negative approaches as long as fair and modern solutions may be found out.Here is one such solution:
At Point Z, cut One Foot (AZ= 28 cm = 11 number shoe) of the bowler and give One Foot (OZ=QY=28 cm =11 Number Shoe) to the runners, and changing geometry of the present “No-ball” and the “Run-out straight line (XZY)” to a new curved Arc–PAQ.This would require the following changes: NO-BALL Mark
New No-ball mark
Arc-CGA becomes new No-ball mark, which replaces the present No-ball line ZD.
Disadvantage to the bowler
It manifests in a variable disadvantage (AZDGA) caused by cutting of one foot.
Partial compensation
It manifests in a variable advantage (CNN’GC), as returned by geometrical calculation, which involves reducing the width of Return Crease from XD=51 cm to XC=25 cm.
Residual compensation
It would come by the new dynamics of game wherein the resulting competition would require the players to be fair and knowledgeable. Impact of new No-ball line
The bowler would be competitively and naturally inclined to remain away from the susceptible area of the pitch.
Also, the bowler in tandem would not find footmarks for ulterior exploitation. Such changes would also rope in skilled commentators.RUN-OUT Mark
(Explained for left-handed batsman facing round the wicket)New Run-out mark
Arc-PCGA becomes the new run-out mark, which replaces the present run-out line XZ.

Advantage to the runners
Batsmen get handsome advantage, up to a maximum of 28 cm, if they tend to hit Point-P of the innovative Arc-PC, thereby completely avoiding any natural or intended damage to the susceptible pitch area. Interestingly, Point-C (zero gain) is so strategically placed that batsman reaching the other end would be forced to seek only Point-P.

In Arc-PC, by diving to Point-P, runners could easily outsmart fielders like Azharuddin, Rhodes, Kaif, Ponting, Vass, etc. (specialist fielders).

Variable disadvantage (CGA): If runners seek the centerline (OZA) then additional 28 cm would add to their safety of the crease. Even sideways from center, batsmen may fall prey to fielders like Inzamam, Laxman, Dravid, etc.
Additional advantage to the game
Batsmen seeking Arc-CP would force the rival captain to bring mid-wicket/ cover fielders forward, and the angle so gained would force sweeper-cover or long-on fielders making additional efforts. There would add more singles and three’s in the game.Impact
Additional safety of 28 cm would force the runners to seek Point-P in Arc-CP and thus completely avoid the susceptible pitch area, rotate the strike better or else loose their wickets.

Geometry of Run-out/No-ball arc

How to lay the Arc on ground:
1. Point-Z is already well marked.

2. Mark Point-A and Point-O on either side of Point-Z at 28 cm each (a foot cut/given).

3. Point-O is now the center with OP and OA as X-axis and Y-axis (+). Coordinates of Point-O, Point-P, and Point-A respectively become (0,0), (183,0) and (0,56).

4. Drawing an ellipse with center O, which cuts axes at A and P:

Equation of Ellipse: X2/a2+Y2/b2=1, Where a=183, b=56

Eccentricity of ellipse: e2=(1-b2/a2) i.e. e = 0.952

Partial compensation to the bowler
Cricket has inevitably become more suitable to the batsmen rather than bowlers. Therefore, some balance needs to be made in favor of bowlers.

In order to partially compensate the bowler, as also returned by the calculation, width of the Return Crease is reduced as follows:

Ellipse cuts the present No-ball line (XZY) at Point-C and Point-C’:

Solving ellipse & Line XZY (equation: Y = 28), we get,

Point-C (158.48, 28) & Point-C’ (-158.48, 28) which gives, ZC = 158.48

Reduction in the Return Crease = CD= ZC – 132 = 158.48 – 132 = 26.48 cm

Let us keep Reduction to 26 cm and 0.48 cm for drawing the lines.

Present Return Crease=XD=51 cm

New Return Crease=XC=XD–CD =51-26=25 cm

Stumping: Where batsman stands?
As in the present setup, batsman continues to stand at Point-Z, and present stumping-line remains DZD’ on the ground. But, it may have different color e.g. red.

Wide balls
The new marks would not hinder the present wide ball regime unless one digs into some ancient philosophy. In ODI matches, lines have no real judgmental bearings on wide balls. It is either the intention of the bowler or movement of the batsman, which enables the umpire to distinguish negative bowling from a playable ball. In Test matches, phenomenon of wide ball is either very rare or truly unintentional.

With the reduced return crease, sightscreen may require widening if the situation so warrants.

Source:- Cricbuzz