IND v AUS 2020: What is a concussion substitute in cricket?

The Indian cricket team is currently playing the first T20I against Australia at the Manuka Oval in Canberra. Ravindra Jadeja was the hero for the visitors in the first innings as his 23-ball 44* guided the Men in Blue to 161/7 in 20 overs. Unfortunately, the southpaw got hit on the helmet, and Yuzvendra Chahal had to replace him as a concussion substitute.

The International Cricket Council (ICC) introduced this rule to reduce the risk for players who suffer a concussion during the game. Initially, the substitute players only had permission to field instead of the concussed player. But the new provision allows the concussion substitute to bat and bowl as well.

The cricket universe must note that the ICC Match Referee has the final call in the concussion substitute rule. In the Canberra T20I match between India and Australia, David Boon gave the green signal to the substitution, but Australian coach Justin Langer was not happy with the decision.

Here’s what the ICC rule book states –

Skipper Virat Kohli had left Yuzvendra Chahal out of the playing XI for today’s game. However, the leg-spinner got a chance to bowl thanks to the concussion substitute rule.

Chahal picked up the wickets of Aaron Finch and Steve Smith in his first two overs. He then went on to get Matthew Wade’s wicket off the last ball of his spell to end with figures of 3/25 in his four overs.

It is pertinent to note that Smith was the first player to be substituted under this rule. Marnus Labuschagne replaced him during the second Ashes Test match at Lord’s last year.

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