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IPL follows SA20: Teams to name playing XI after toss

Indian Premier League (IPL) follows SA20: Teams to name playing XI after toss from IPL 2023. BCCI introduced few more rules ahead of the IPL 2023.

IPL 2023: Teams to name playing XI after toss | Walking Wicket (Images: ©BCCI/IPL)
IPL 2023: Teams to name playing XI after toss (Images: ©BCCI/IPL)

The first game of Indian Premier League (IPL) 2023 season is all set to kick off on March 31 as the defending champions Gujarat Titans take on Chennai Super Kings at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad.

For the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic, IPL will return to its traditional home and away format. As one gears up for the 16th edition of the Indian Premier League, one anticipates a lot of changes on the horizon. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has revised playing conditions and put forward some interesting rules in an attempt to make the cash-rich league stand out from other competitions.

Let’s focus our lens on these new rules and try to assess what impact it would have in the upcoming IPL edition.

Teams to name playing XI after toss

This playing condition was first put in action in the inaugural version of SA20 earlier this year. BCCI has been inspired by this approach and has taken a leaf out of their book. Prior to the advent of this rule, captains had to exchange their team sheets and later submit them to the match officials just before toss. This time around they will do so just after the toss.

In what is seen as an extraordinary move, organisers feel that this rule will give all the ten participating franchises the much needed flexibility to finalise their playing XI based on the outcome of the toss. And while doing so, they can also take into consideration the prevailing conditions of the ground and the pitch. For instance, if team X wants to have a bat and defend on a slow track and is forced to bowl first then they can either strengthen their bowling department with an extra specialist spin bowling all-rounder or add a specialist pinch-hitter who can go ballistic in the death overs. This will ensure that teams would have more balanced lineups leading into any crucial fixture.

This major change will also allow teams to move away from the long standing notion of “win toss, win match” and eradicate the impact of other external factors like dew etc. As Graeme Smith, SA 20's director and former South African captain rightly pointed out, this move will “lessen the impact of toss and allow a level-playing field based on the conditions”. It will certainly be interesting to see how teams alter their approach and get in terms with this massive change.

Inclusion of an Impact Player

This is considered yet another revolutionary move which will allow teams to feature a substitute who will be allowed to either bat or bowl. Traditionally, substitutes were barred from executing their primary responsibilities either as a batter or a bowler and were simply confined to fielding or keeping wickets with the consent of the umpires. Now all of this is set to change forever as teams will be able to make tactical substitutions depending on the developing game situation. Just like football, rugby, basketball and other sports, teams could make tactical substitutions that would enable a substitute to perform or participate like any other regular player.

BCCI certainly factored this aspect and felt this approach can work even in franchise cricket. However, an impact player can only feature an Indian unless the playing 11 of the team has less than 4 overseas players. In order to introduce an Impact Player, the skipper needs to enter a total of 15 players in the team sheet out of which 11 would constitute the playing Xl and remaining 4 will form the substitutes out of which an impact player can be selected at any point during the game or before the commencement of the match. As a matter of fact, an impact player can be brought in before the start of an innings, at the end of an over, and at the fall of a wicket or when a batter retires. However, if the bowling side brings in an Impact Player during an over, i.e., at the fall of a wicket or if a batter retires then that particular player will not be allowed to bowl the remaining balls of the over. The Impact Player will also be allowed to bowl their full quota of four overs irrespective of the number of overs bowled by the player they are replacing. For example, a bowler who bowls his full quota of overs inside the powerplay can be replaced by the Impact Player who could still bowl their full quota of fours overs. In addition, the IPL management announced that a delayed start or a subsequent reduction of over will not affect the way Impact Player can be utilised and can be deployed any time during the match.

Slow over rate penalty

The over rate penalty rule has already been in place in T20I cricket as set by the ICC. However, such a change was not incorporated earlier in the IPL. In a first, BCCI will introduce this rule in the upcoming IPL edition which will restrict the fielding team to have just 4 instead of 5 fielders outside the 30-yard circle should they go beyond the cut-off time. Only time will tell if such a measure is going to be enough for the teams to complete games on time.

Unfair Movement by the wicketkeeper or the fielder

This is a very old law which has existed and prevailed for centuries. However, this was tweaked by the MCC last year. Earlier, any excessive movement by a fielder or wicketkeeper before the delivery of the ball would be deemed unfair and umpires would need to intervene and call dead ball. Now the dead ball call will be accompanied by 5 penalty runs should the fielder or the wicketkeeper fail to comply to this law. We have seen a prime example of how the Bangladeshi wicketkeeper batter Nurul Hasan was penalised with 5 penalty runs for excessive movement in a T20 World Cup match down under last year. This rule will now come into effect in IPL and the players will need to watch their movement as the bowler runs into bowl.


The introduction of new rules is definitely bound to add a new dimension to the game. It will surely be fascinating to see how the addition of such innovative rules will have an impact on the way events unfold on the field of play. Team managements have their tasks cut out as they will need to figure out a strategy to leverage the new rules to their advantage. But without a doubt, playing 11 after toss and the Impact Player are two massive changes that have the capability of turning average games into nail biting fascinating thrillers.


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