World Cup 2019: What the rule book says about rain affecting games

World Cup 2019: What the rule book says about rain affecting games

The England weather has been playing spoilsport in the ongoing ICC World Cup and three matches have been washed out so far. Here's what the rule book says on what is to be done when rain interrupts play.

Bristol Ground
Umpires inspect the pitch during a rain delay in Bristol on Tuesday. (Source: Reuters)

The weather in England is playing spoilsport in the ongoing ICC World Cup. Three full matches have so far been washed out due to rain, the latest being the Sri Lanka-Bangladesh clash that was called off without a ball being bowled. To cricket fans’ further disappointment, upcoming matches, including Australia vs Pakistan, India vs New Zealand and even India vs Pakistan, are risk being washed out.

Given the impact the weather is having on this edition of the World Cup, teams are busy making calculations about how it affects their position in the points table and their future course of action. Here’s what the rule book says about the rules related to rain affecting play:

When can a match be abandoned?
Matches are abandoned in the worst case scenario. Eight hours is the amount of time allocated for each ODI match from the official start time. If conditions improve within ‘game time’, then play can start or resume. For example, most World Cup matches are scheduled to start at 10:30 am and finish by 6:30 pm England time. If it starts raining in the middle of a game, umpires can wait till 6:30 pm before taking a final call. If the approximate eight hours expire or if conditions show no chance of improvement, matches can be abandoned.

Are there Reserve Days for games?

Despite the uncertainty over the weather, the ICC has not kept any reserve day for group fixtures due to the tight schedule. If a match in the group stage is called off before the second innings or before a ball is bowled, it will be considered a draw. If the match is abandoned during the second innings, the Duckworth-Lewis-Stern (DLS) method is  applied to determine an outcome.


In the group stage, extra time can be allotted. A match can go on for 75 minutes past the scheduled close of play. In some cases, the match referee can extend play by a further hour beyond the 75 minutes.

Reserve days are only there for semi-finals and finals. If a match is interrupted, it will continue on the reserve day, and not start afresh.

If a semi-final is washed out, the team that ranked higher during the league stage qualifies for the final.

If the reserve day for the finals is also washed out, the two finalists share the trophy.

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When is Super Over played?

Normally, Super Over rule is applied in T20Is to decide the winner in case a match ends in a tie. However, Super Over has been introduced in the ICC World Cup to decide the winner of a rain-affected match in the semi-final or final.

It is subject to weather conditions, and the Super Over will take place on the scheduled day of the match (or reserve day if it is utilised for the semi-finals or final) at a time to be determined by the ICC Match Referee. In normal circumstances, it shall commence 10 minutes after the conclusion of the match. Each team shall be allowed to have one player review during the Super Over.