Thursday, October 27th, 2016

Rhodes: New Toss Rule A “huge Success For English Cricket”

Rhodes: New Toss Rule A “huge Success For English Cricket”

Steve Rhodes says the new "toss" rule brought in for the 2016 domestic season – and to be continued next summer – has proved to be a "huge success for English cricket."

Worcestershire's Director Of Cricket believes the change in regulations led to better pitches which can only benefit England in preparing players for international cricket.

Rhodes says it has lessened the effectiveness of "the gentle medium pacer who would get pounded in Test cricket."

Away teams now automatically have the right to bowl first in the Specsavers County Championship and a toss only takes place should they desire to try and bat first.

Rhodes, currently part of the England coaching set-up for the Test series in Bangladesh, said: "It was a massive success in my view.

"You've only got to look back at the two divisions and how competitive they were and people had to work hard for their victories.

"It was a real success last summer. There were some big scores and occasions when people quite rightly had to work hard for their victories.

"It was a huge success for English cricket in terms of making the two divisions very competitive.

"Any side could beat each other because you are turning up and playing on decent wickets.

"Secondly, for England they want bowlers with enough pace to trouble international batsmen on good wickets.

"They also want spinners who can hopefully trouble good players on good wickets. The best way of preparing players for that is to play on better wickets in county cricket."

Rhodes added: "In the past, we've had poor wickets in county cricket and a gentle medium pacer who would get pounded in Test cricket has been able to lob the ball on a line and length and good players have not been able to play a forward defensive for fear of nicking off.

"That sort of cricket to me is poor. I think it should be a fair contest between bat and ball and I certainly think bowlers need to work hard for wickets.

"I certainly think good players should be in a position to play a forward defensive without fear of getting out and that's what has been happening a little bit in the past.

"People haven't been able to defend, they've counter-attacked and all around it has been poor cricket because people were saying 'well look at the poor shots people are playing.'

"They were playing poor shots on the old wickets because they couldn't play a defensive shot. Now they can and we've seen some good cricket.

"If you produce an unbelievably green wicket, do you want to be all out for 100 and out of the game potentially?

"You might say well you can bowl them out again, which is true, but no side wants to get bowled out for 100 and be out of the game mid afternoon on the first day.

"There is only a certain amount of grass, greeness, moisture that people are going to produce."