Why on-field umpires are not checking front foot no-balls anymore & What is Auto No Ball?

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Auto no ball

ICC is trialing the new Auto No Ball technology in INDvsWI series


While watching the first T20 match between India vs West Indies in Hyderabad, you might have noticed that the on-field umpires were checking the front-foot no balls. Instead, it was being checked by the third umpire. Actually, the match was following the new rule of Auto No Ball by ICC.

In the recent past, front foot no-balls have created a number of controversies. Recently, during the Brisbane Test between Pakistan and Australia, on-field umpires missed 21 overstepping no balls from the Pakistani bowlers.

Auto No Ball

The ICC has decided to give the responsibility of checking no-balls to the third Umpires to minimize such errors. Thus, from the 1st T20 match between India and the West Indies, the on-field umpires are responsible for all the usual decisions apart from monitoring the no-ball in the whole series. This system has been named Auto No Ball.

This is not the first time when ICC is doing a trial of this technology to monitor overstepping in international cricket.  It was earlier used during the ODI series between England and Pakistan in 2016. Meanwhile, there are talks that IPL might introduce an extra TV umpire to monitor no-balls in the IPL 2020.

The ICC said that the outcomes of the trail will be used to gauge whether the system is yielding beneficial results of no balls or not. The outcome will decide if this method could be implemented in future games to minimize disruption to the flow of the match.

How do the Auto-No Balls work?

The TV umpire or third umpire, while sitting in the match referee’s box will get a split-screen image of every ball.  One screen is the usual one (broadcasted to audiences) and the other is the front-foot ball landing of every ball in the match.

The third umpire will inform the on-field umpire within 2-3 seconds if the ball was a no-ball. Then, the TV umpire can go ahead and make the decision.

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