Pollard sees runs flowing with new ODI rules

KHULNA, Bangladesh – Kieron Pollard said the new playing conditions regulating field restrictions in One-day International could prove challenging for captains and bowlers.


The all-rounder was speaking after he captained West Indies to a 118-run victory over a Bangladesh Cricket Board XI in a One-day practice match on Wednesday at the Sheikh Abu Naser Stadium here.

Under the new rules approved last May by the International Cricket Council, the sport’s World governing body, there will be two blocks of Power Plays instead of three.

In an uninterrupted innings, the first Power Play will be restricted to the first 10 overs with only two fielders allowed outside the 30-yard, field restriction circle.

The second five-over batting Power Play (in an uninterrupted innings) will have to be completed by the 40th over and only three fielders will be allowed outside the fielding restriction area at the time of delivery.

In the non-Power Play overs, no more than four fielders will be permitted outside the 30-yard circle.

Pollard, the Windies vice captain for the series, was leading the side in the absence of Darren Sammy and said the regulations will make things quite interesting.

"It was very challenging and the bowlers will have to be on their Ps and Qs," he said. "They can’t let it stray because there are not many guys outside [the circle].

"But the rules have been set and players will just have to follow, so I think it is something that we have to get used to. Hopefully, we can develop the right combination and have the right tactics to counter not having that extra guy outside the field restriction circle."

He added: "With only four fielders allowed outside, I think a lot more runs will be scored in ODIs. You’ll see a lot more 300-run games instead of the 270 to 280-run games because of that extra guy inside.

"I think captains will have a hard job in setting fields and bowlers will have an even tougher job in trying to restrict the batsmen with all the innovative stroke-play that has come into the game."

Pollard said powerful batsmen like himself and others in the West Indies side may relish taking advantage of the new rules, but felt that cool heads still needed to prevail.

"It can be a good thing and it can be a bad thing," he said. "If you want to hit the ball outside because there are only four fielders, you can still find one of them, because you are too eager.

"You still have to understand the situation and hopefully it will come off. We have a lot of power-hitters so clearing the boundary and the ball falling in gaps is important for us. Hopefully we can capitalise on it until there’s any further change."

Pollard said the practice match was a useful tune-up for the visitors with six players, including himself, shipped in to help form the limited-overs squad.

"The guys arriving from the Caribbean, the batsmen got a hit and the bowlers got a run out in the One-day format with the white ball," he said.

"It was good all in all. I think we did well and hopefully we can carry this momentum into the ODI series against Bangladesh.

"It was also a good experience for me leading the side for the first time. The players supported me and being able to have the amount of runs we scored on the board, I was able to try different things."

West Indies had piled up 361 for seven from their 50 overs in the practice match, with Lendl Simmons hitting the top score of 84 and Devon Thomas supporting with 61 down the order.

Pollard scored 44, opener Kieran Powell made 34, left-hander Darren Bravo got 31 and Dwayne Smith added 30.

In reply, the BCB XI were dismissed for 243 in 49.1 overs with off-spinner Sunil Narine leading the Windies attack with 3-47 from 10 overs, while Kemar Roach and left-arm spinner Veerasammy Permaul snared two wickets apiece.