The NEW 2017 Code The Laws of Cricket take effect from 1st October 2017.
There are still 42 Laws, although two previous Laws have been deleted, with two additions. The significant changes are:
• The new Code of Laws is written in language applying to all persons, regardless of gender. The new Code includes an increased use of generic nouns like ‘fielder’ and ‘bowler’ and uses ‘he/she’ when required, together with a broadened disclaimer covering all genders. The term ‘batsman’ remains, however.
• The Handled the ball Law has been deleted, with its contents merged into Obstructing the field, reducing the list of dismissals from ten to nine. This will have no effect on whether a batsman is dismissed; rather, it is just the method of dismissal that might be changed.
• The Lost ball Law has been deleted and is now covered under Dead ball.
• The old Law 2 has been divided into two separate Laws, relating to the batsmen (Law 25) and the fielders (Law 24). These Laws have changed the concept of Penalty time, which starts to accrue immediately when a player leaves the field and which will also now affect when the player may bat.
• Law 5 (The Bat) places limits on the thickness of the edges and the overall depth of the bat. The maximum dimensions will be 108mm in width (unchanged), 67mm in depth with 40mm edges.
• Law 8.4 has been changed, to help prevent injuries, to allow specially designed mechanisms which tether the bails to the stumps, thereby restricting the distance that they can fly off the stumps but without limiting their ability to be dislodged.
• Law 24 (Fielders’ absence; substitutes) now allows a substitute to keep wicket, with the consent of the umpires.
• Law 30 (Batsman out of his/her ground) has been amended to give protection to a running or diving batsman whose bat bounces up after having been grounded beyond the popping crease.
• Law 41.8 now covers the bowling of deliberate front foot No balls, which will result in the bowler being suspended from bowling.
• Law 41.15 now prevents the batsman from taking stance in a position where he/she will inevitably encroach on the protected area.
• Law 41.16 has changed so that the non-striker risks being Run out if he/she leaves his/her ground before the bowler would normally be expected to release the ball.
• Law 42 (Player Conduct) is a new Law which gives an in-match consequence for poor on-field behaviour including, for the most serious offences, temporary or permanent removal from the field of play.