Three major criticisms of the Impact Player rule in IPL 2023

A new tactical substitution rule will be implemented by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) beginning with the IPL 2023.

Although specifics have not yet been provided, it is anticipated to be comparable to the method utilized in this year’s Syed Mushtaq Ali Trophy, in which one of the four previously announced substitutes could take the place of any player after the 14th over of either inning.

Given that the team only uses 11 batters, the Impact Player can bat in place of a batter who has already been run out or bowl four overs to replace a bowler who has already played all of his overs.

Even though the move is a significant tactical addition to the game, observers and fans have not been overly enthusiastic about it. It has three major criticisms:

#3 Unfair to a few IPL teams

The timing of the announcement is the first concern. The Impact Player Rule changes how a team looks at its balance and how they should allocate their resources between the playing XI and the bench, making cricket almost a 12-player game.

Such a significant strategic disclosure comes a long time in the leadup to the IPL 2023 sale, however not before the groups made their exchanges and maintenance. The budget for each team is different. The budgets of SunRisers Hyderabad (42.25 crores) and Kolkata Knight Riders (7.05 crores) differ by 35.2 crores.

The Knight Riders have assembled a solid starting lineup. They would have only looked for good, cheap options for their bench if this rule hadn’t been in place. As an Impact Player in the majority of games, they will now also need to consider a second first-choice player who may be of value.SunRisers will be able to more easily adapt to the change in this way.

In addition, as Gurkirat Singh Gill pointed out in the preceding tweet, teams like Punjab Kings (PBKS), which had quality players but lacked balance in their team last year, would benefit more from this rule than, for example, Chennai Super Kings (CSK), whose situation was the opposite.

Teams that lacked balance now have an outside measure to help them compete with teams that used their resources to put together the first XI with a wide range of players.
What Means for Player changes elements is an alternate point, yet significant its presentation currently doesn’t exactly keep all groups on a level battleground.

#2 The most common criticism of the Impact Player rule is that it “imitates football.”

Cricket, like any other sport, has always been resistant to change, especially when that change makes it similar to another sport.

In cricket teams without Impact Players, substitutes only serve as a fielder to replace an injured or worn-out player whose greatest contribution could be taking an important catch or influencing a run-out. Bench strength only matters during a tournament, when teams adjust their XIs based on the opponent, pitch, and other factors.

Cricket is now closer to sports like football and basketball, where players coming off the bench can make a big difference, thanks to the direct involvement of a substitute. For some fans, this is too fundamental for the sport, making it “unlike cricket” and directly destroying its “beauty.”

Some argue that this rule is intended to “fix something which is not broken,” while others contend that it adds complexity to a sport that is already complex. It has been agreed upon that it overlooks other enhancements that could be made to make it more engaging and inviting for children.

#1 Promoting one-dimensional players

Having too many players with a single specialized skill has been a major constraint in every ICC tournament India has participated in recently. Less multi-ability players deny groups of equilibrium and adaptability and make them more unsurprising.

Due to the post-14th overrule, the Impact Player will likely be a death-over bowler or a hard-hitting batter. Instead of being utility players with multiple skills, a growing number of young players will tune their skills accordingly.
Although this can only be evaluated over time, the issue cannot be ignored.

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