Chennai, Dec 30: India captain MS Dhoni is not happy with the new set of rules for One Day Internationals and he feels these changes will affect the 50-over game. India and Pakistan are playing under new rule changes for the first time on Sunday in their opening match of the three-game series.
Speaking to reporters on Saturday at MA Chidambaram Stadium, Dhoni said: "If you ask me, I am not very happy with the rules. I feel there have been a lot of changes in ODIs. People talk a lot about Test cricket and T20s but all the experiments are foisted on the ODIs. If you see in the last one year or so, a lot of teams made 300-plus and a lot of teams chased down 300-plus. I feel it was very interesting. I always say each format has its own characteristics, its own special entity."
The modifications to the ODI rules by International Cricket Council (ICC) have been in place since November this year. However, India are playing for the first time with these rules. According to the changes, two bouncers are allowed per over and only two blocks of powerplays are in place. The first 10 overs of powerplay and one set of five overs for batting side. The bowling powerplay of five overs has been scrapped. Also there cannot be more than four fielders outside the 30-yard circle as opposed to five earlier.
"I think with all these rules, we are pulling ODIs towards T20. Not to forget when ODIs started, a lot of experts felt it won't be good for spinners and that they will stop flighting the ball. With five fielders inside the circle all the time, what kind of bowling they will do. As of now I don't know what is the best combination for the new rules, what will be a good score. These things need to be considered," Dhoni added.
When queried about two bouncers per over, Dhoni, in a lighter vein, said: "We are not using even one, where will we bowl two? That's the reality. Once we get fast bowlers like Umesh (Yadav), we will try to use it but as of now, out of two we will keep one (bouncer) in our pocket only."
Pakistan skipper Misbah-ul-Haq said these rules are challenging for his team. "It is a very difficult scenario. At the beginning, both for the bowlers and the captain, it will be difficult to adapt. There will be changes in the game - the way the batsmen play, the tactics of the bowlers... Gradually, bowlers, batsmen and captains will come to grips with them. But at the start, it will definitely be difficult for everyone concerned."
New set of ODI rules
Powerplays and fielding restrictions
Instead of three, there will be two blocks of Powerplays.
In an uninterrupted innings, the first Powerplay will be restricted to the first 10 overs with only two fielders allowed outside the 30-yard circle. The second five-over batting Powerplay (in an uninterrupted innings) will have to be completed by the 40th over and only three fielders will be allowed outside the fielding restriction area at the time of delivery.
In the non-Powerplay overs, no more than four fielders will be permitted outside the 30-yard circle.
A bowler shall be limited to two fast short-pitched deliveries per over.