Impact subs add lower order firepower as IPL smashes scoring records | Cricket News

NEW DELHI: The better use of the Indian Premier League’s ‘impact substitute rule‘ has been the key reason for the high-scoring matches in this season’s Twenty20 competition, according to experts.
The tournament has witnessed numerous scoring records being broken. Sunrisers Hyderabad achieved a new milestone by scoring 287-3 against Royal Challengers Bengaluru, surpassing their previous record of 277-3 against Mumbai Indians set just three weeks ago.

Travis Head’s 39-ball century, which is the fourth-fastest in the tournament’s 17-season history, was a standout performance for Hyderabad. Heinrich Klaasen‘s innings, where he hit seven sixes in his 67 off 31 balls, also contributed significantly to the team’s success.

“Impact player makes a big difference,” Klaasen said after his team’s 25-run victory in Bengaluru.
“It’s nice to see our boys striking it nicely and our bowlers can at least defend 270, which is always a positive sign.”
The impact player rule was introduced last year and allows the replacement of a player named in the starting team at any point after the toss.
The rule states that teams batting first have the option to include an additional big-hitting batsman towards the end of the batting lineup, who, as the rule specifies, can be substituted by a bowler during the fielding innings. On the other hand, ‘Alternatively a bowler can be replaced if they bat second.’
“The impact player rule has definitely worked,” former India women’s captain Mithali Raj said in a Star Sports press meet on Monday.
Five substitutes can be designated for selection, and the one utilized must be an ‘Indian’, unless the starting XI has less than ‘four’ overseas players. Teams have been leveraging the rule to increase the probability of ‘quick runs’ in the ‘final few overs’.
“We have seen how it has helped teams to post big totals and… especially it has helped teams in chasing,” said Raj.
Hyderabad’s total was the second highest men’s score in Twenty20s after the 314-3 scored by Nepal against Mongolia at last year’s Asian Games in Hangzhou, China.
Bengaluru fell short by 20 runs after their impact substitute Anuj Rawat hit a 14-ball 25 to help his team finish on 262-7.
The 549-run aggregate in Monday’s encounter was the highest in any T20 match.
“It’s the intensity that these guys are playing at now, it is the new way. These guys are not frightened,” said former England batsman Kevin Pietersen during TV commentary.
Hyderabad amassed their previous record of 277-3 against Mumbai Indians on March 27, but days later Kolkata almost eclipsed it with 272-7 in their 106-run win over Delhi Capitals.
Kolkata opener Sunil Narine led the way with a fearless 85 off 39 balls and Delhi coach Ricky Ponting believes substitutes give the top order extra freedom to play shots.
“I feel the impact players had a bit of an influence on that (total),” Ponting said after the defeat.
“The fact is that most teams have now got someone reasonably good that can bat at number nine, and sometimes even a specialist batsman at number eight.
“That definitely helps, so it gives the batting team the extra freedom to go harder earlier.”
But former India pace bowler Irfan Pathan said there was a flipside to the impact player rule with the role of all-rounders diminishing as they were often replaced after their batting or bowling stint.
“Impact player rule is benefiting (the) entertainment part of cricket, which is high-scoring games,” Pathan told reporters.
“But Indian cricket will have to think about it going forward as far as all-rounders are concerned.”
(With AFP inputs)

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