Front foot no-ball technology will be introduced at a major tournament for the first time (PA Images)
11 February 2020

Front foot no-ball technology to make major tournament debut at Women's T20 World Cup as ICC aim to reduce errors

Front-foot technology will be used for the first time in a major tournament at the Women's T20 World Cup in Australia, the International Cricket Council have announced.

It will replace the current practice which puts responsibility on the the on-field umpires to call front foot no-balls.

These are only then checked by the third umpire during a decision review or if the on-field umpire calls for a check after a wicket falls.

A front foot no-ball is when a bowler oversteps the popping crease at the delivery end as he/she lands to deliver the ball.

If the foot lands behind the crease and slides forward, this is a fair delivery.

If a batsman is dismissed on a no-ball then the wicket does not stand and both an extra run and an extra ball are added to the over.

The change comes about following successful trials in 12 games across India and the West Indies in which the ICC reported 100% accuracy across 4,717 deliveries.

ICC General Manager Geoff Allardice said: "cricket has an excellent track record of introducing technology to support the decision making of our match officials and I am confident this technology will reduce the small number of front foot no-ball errors at the Women's T20 World Cup.

"No-balls are difficult for umpires to call accurately, and even though the percentage of deliveries that are no-balls is low, it is important to call them correctly."

The concept was first trialled in 2016 in an ODI series between England and Pakistan, but Allardice is adamant the technology has 'improved significantly' since then.

He added: "(This will allow us) to introduce it cost effectively and with minimum impact on the flow of the game."

In a recent test match between England and South Africa, men's player Rassie van der Dussen had a lucky escape after his dismissal by Stuart Broad was overturned when the umpire deemed the delivery illegal.

Boos reverbeated around Newlands as Van der Dussen, who was on 16 at the time, remained at the crease and went on to make a healthy 68.

As well as being used at the Women's T20 World Cup, which starts on February 21, the system will also be in use in this year's Indian Premier League after a number of controversies blemished last year's tournament. 

The most notable of these was the dismissal of Virat Kohli when his Royal Challengers Bangalore team narrowly lost to Mumbai Indians after an un-noticed front foot no-ball from Lasith Malinga removed the Indian captain on the last delivery of the match.

Following the game, a visibly angry Kohli slammed the umpiring, labelling it 'ridiculous'.

"We are playing at IPL level, not club cricket," said a livid Kohli.

 "That's just a ridiculous call off the last ball. The umpires should have their eyes open, it was a no-ball by an inch.

"It's a completely different game altogether (with the extra delivery). So if it's a game of margins, I don't know what's happening. They should have been more sharp and more careful out there."

Kohli was visibly livid at his dismissal (Twitter: @imVkohli)

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