Who makes these rules, and why do we put up with them?

Via Cricinfo:

Andrew Symonds can be named in Australia’s World Cup squad and be replaced if he fails to recover from a serious arm injury, the ICC has ruled. Australia made the request because they are unsure how long Symonds will be out with a torn biceps.

Symonds suffered the injury during Friday night’s loss to England and had surgery on Sunday morning. Estimates on the speed of his return seem to vary from six weeks to six months, but he is in serious doubt for the tournament in the Caribbean. Australia’s first game of the World Cup is against Scotland on March 14 while the more important Super Eight stage begins on March 27.

Australia must announce their 15-man squad by Tuesday and Cricket Australia did not want to be forced into a situation where Symonds would be picked in the outfit and then have to drop out, leaving them a player short. AAP reported Dave Richardson, the ICC’s general manager of cricket, allowed the change.

I have some things to ask at this point. Why did national bodies allowe the ICC to determine how large their World Cup squads can be. And I do not see why they should not be changed?

What is the difference between the World Cup and the Ashes, where both nations can call up players that were not in the original sides.  What about West Indies, who are hosting this tournament- why should they have to name a squad? The extra flexibility of being a host is denied them.

I’m just staggered that no one ever seems to have asked why the national boards allowed the ICC to dictate this nonsense to them in the first place.

ICC innovations structure isn’t very appealing

It has been reported in today’s paper that the ICC are considering a trial where players can appeal against the umpires decision. They are talking about using the Champions Trophy as a test bed for the idea. I noted the other day that the players don’t take the Champions Trophy very seriously, and it appears that the ICC does not either.

The ICC cricket committee, chaired by Indian great Sunil Gavaskar and including former Australian captain Allan Border, will debate whether players should be allowed to appeal against a certain number of decisions per innings if they feel they have been wronged by umpires.

An appeals system has been used in the National Football League for years, and the ICC denied such a process in cricket could undermine the authority of the standing umpires.

“What we are looking to do is increase the already high numbers of correct decisions made by our on-field umpires without diminishing their role and this approach has the potential to do just that,” said Dave Richardson, ICC’s general manager of cricket.

Presumably, a captain could appeal, say, two contentious decisions per innings and ask that they be referred to the third umpire. The standard of international umpiring has been a big issue recently.

The standard of international umpiring is in fact fine, if you ask me. Australia toured South Africa and Bangladesh and played 5 tests and 8 odi games and I don’t remember a single contentious decision.

While I am a crusty old curmudgeon, I do not in fact have a problem with new ideas in cricket. However, I do have notions about the proper place to test new ideas, and the ICC Champions Trophy, whatever its merits, or otherwise, is not in fact one of those places. If the ICC had asked a member country to test its ‘supersub’ rule in a domestic competition, the flaws in the idea, which were manifest at the time anyway, could have been demonstrated in a slightly less public manner.