‘Concussion Substitute’ Law Explained, Here’s Everything You Need to Know About ICC’s Controversial Rule
Ravindra Jadeja appeared in pain during 1st T20I between India and Australia at Manuka Oval©CA-Twitter

A concussed Ravindra Jadeja was replaced by Yuzvendra Chahal in the first T20 international between India and Australia in Canberra on Friday. Jadeja, Chahal played crucial roles and eventually made match-winning contributions much to the frustration of the hosts – Australia. Jadeja was hit by a Mitchell Starc bouncer in the final over of the Indian innings, he was seen limping while running between the wickets. He remained unbeaten at 44 off 23 balls, which helped India post 161/7 that ultimately proved enough for a win by 11 runs.

In July last year, the International Cricket Council had allowed like for like concussion substitutes in case a player got hit on the head. “ICC Match Referee should consider the likely role the concussed player would have played during the remainder of the match, and the normal role that would be performed by the nominated Concussion Replacement,” the ICC rule states.

ICC had approved the player replacements in all formats of men and women’s international cricket and for first-class cricket as well worldwide. The England and Wales Cricket Board – ECB – had adopted the rules in 2018 for its four professional domestic tournaments. And after a successful outcome in domestic cricket, ICC inducted the rule in international cricket to safeguard the players from unnecessary harms.

The rule was fast-tracked into domestic cricket after the demise of Australia batsman Phillips Hughes, who lost his life in 2014 after being struck on his head in a Sheffield Shield match.

ICC allowed teams to replace a player in their playing XI who suffered a concussion during the match. However, the regulations emphasize on a ‘like-for-like’ replacement for the concussed player and that part still remains to be under dark clouds. Interestingly, match referees have a huge say if a team decides to bring a substitute during a match.

During 1st T20I between Australia and India, Australia head coach Justin Langer expressed displeasure over match referee David Boon’s decision of allowing Chahal as a concussion substitute for Jadeja.

Chahal picked up 3/25 in his four overs and had a massive role to play Indian team’s triumph in the first T20I. The 30-year-old was adjudged ‘Player of the Match’ for his performance. “Ravindra Jadeja was hit on the helmet in the final over of the first innings of the first T20I. Yuzvendra Chahal will take the field in the 2nd innings as a concussion substitute. Jadeja is currently being assessed by the BCCI Medical Team,” read a BCCI post on its Twitter handle.