Thursday 12 November 2015

Focus on Law 40: The Wicketkeeper

1. Protective equipment

The wicketkeeper is the only member of the fielding side permitted to wear gloves and external leg guards. If he does so, these are to be regarded as part of his person for the purposes of Law 41.2 (Fielding the ball). If by his actions and positioning it is apparent to the umpires that he will not be able to discharge his duties as a wicket-keeper, he shall forfeit this right and also the right to be recognised as a wicketkeeper for the purposes of Laws 32.3 (A fair catch), 39 (Stumped), 41.1 (Protective equipment), 41.5 (Limitation of on side fielders) and 41.6 (Fielders not to encroach on the pitch).

2. Gloves

If, as permitted under 1 above, the wicketkeeper wears gloves, they shall have no webbing between the fingers except joining index finger and thumb, where webbing may be inserted as a means of support. If used, the webbing shall be
(a) a single piece of non-stretch material which, although it may have facing material attached, shall have no reinforcement or tucks.
(b) such that the top edge of the webbing (i) does not protrude beyond the straight line joining the top of the index finger to the top of the thumb. (ii) is taut when a hand wearing the glove has the thumb fully extended.

3. Position of wicketkeeper

The wicketkeeper shall remain wholly behind the wicket at the striker's end from the moment the ball comes into play until

(a) a ball delivered by the bowler either (i) touches the bat or person of the striker or (ii) passes the wicket at the striker's end or (b) the striker attempts a run.

In the event of the wicketkeeper contravening this Law, the umpire at the striker's end shall call and signal No ball as soon as possible after the delivery of the ball.

4. Movement by wicketkeeper

It is unfair if the wicketkeeper standing back makes a significant movement towards the wicket after the ball comes into play and before it reaches the striker. In the event of such unfair movement by the wicketkeeper, either umpire shall call and signal Dead ball. It will not be considered a significant movement if the wicketkeeper moves a few paces forward for a slower delivery.

5. Restriction on actions of wicketkeeper

If, in the opinion of either umpire, the wicketkeeper interferes with the striker’s right to play the ball and to guard his wicket, Law 23.3(b)(vi) (Umpire calling and signalling Dead ball) shall apply.

If, however, the umpire concerned considers that the interference by the wicketkeeper was wilful, then Law 42.4 (Deliberate attempt to distract striker) shall apply.

6. Interference with wicketkeeper by striker

If, in playing at the ball or in the legitimate defence of his wicket, the striker interferes with the wicketkeeper, he shall not be out, except as provided for in Law 37.3 (Obstructing a ball from being caught).

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