BCCI announced the introduction of an ‘impact player’ from the next edition of IPL. An experiment which was in the pipeline for quite a few years will finally see the light of day in IPL 2023 after it was successfully implemented in the recently-concluded Syed Mushtaq Ali T20 Trophy. The BCCI said the rule, which will allow each team to introduce a substitute player in the middle of a match, will add ‘a new dimension’ to the popular tournament. “From IPL 2023 season, a tactical concept will be introduced to add a new dimension to the IPL, wherein one substitute player per team will be able to take a more active role in an IPL match,” BCCI said on Friday.

What is IPL’s impact player rule and how does it work?

The rule was first tried out successfully in the domestic T20 tournament with teams gaining tactical benefits from it. In this case, teams, apart from naming the playing XI, will also name four substitutes before the first ball is bowled. Among those, one cricketer can be brought in as a substitute before the end of the 14th over. He will be able to bat and bowl his full quota like any other cricketer.

IPL impact player features

– The impact player’s role will have nothing to do with the player he is replacing. In other words, unlike concussion substitutes or Supersub concepts used in ODIs between 2005 and 2006, an impact player won’t have to be an ideantical or like-for-like replacement for the player he is replacing. For example – a bowler can be replaced by a batter or vice-versa.

– There is no restriction to the number of balls or overs the impact player can be a part of. For example, it won’t matter if the impact player has replaced a bowler who has already completed his full quota. He will still be eligible to bowl four overs provided there are only five bowlers who are bowling the full quota. Same with batting. An impact player can come into play in place of an already dismissed batter and still get to bat like another normal batter, provided only XI cricketers are batting.

– An impact player cannot be introduced in the middle of an over unless he is coming in to bat at the fall of a wicket or he is replacing a fielder who is injured. In the second case, the replaced injured player can’t take further part in the match, not even as a substitute.

– In case of shortened matches due to bad weather conditions, the rule gets a bit complex. An impact player won’t come into play if the match is reduced to 10-overs-per-side. If it’s more than 10 overs, then the impact player can come in according to the match rules. For Example, in the case of an 18-overs-per-side match, an impact will have to be introduced before the end of the 13th over. In another instance, if the game gets shortened after one side has already used the impact player then the the other team will be allowed to use it irrespective of the number of overs the game has been reduced to.

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