Pete Russell stood behind the introduction of the red card rule in the Caribbean Premier League (CPL). This happened after Kieron Pollard raised objections over the new rule. When it comes to the rule, the football-type regulation was implemented to help address the issue of slow-over rates in the tournament.
The Trinbago Knight Riders (TKR) became the first team to be impacted by the rule when Sunil Narine was the first of them to be given a card. Pollard went a step further to term the new ruling as ‘absolutely ridiculous.’ Russell said that the regulation was brought in place keeping the best interests of the fans in mind.
The real reason behind the overate rule are the fans – Pete Russell
“I thought it did exactly what I wanted it to do (laughs). Unfortunately, Kieron did not quite see it that way, but look it is tough,” Russell said before the start of the Barbados leg of the CPL. “I’m sure the captain next to me [Rovman Powell, (Barbados Royals] would agree. If you have three overs where you effectively have the penalty, it does make a difference. The reason we’ve done it is to just speed up the pace of play. I know IPL games go well over four hours, which is just too long.” Russell said to ESPNcricinfo.
“We’re doing it for the fans – that’s really the reason for doing it. I certainly don’t mind it to change. If you actually look at the overall timings each game is 17 minutes quicker than it was last year. So, from that point of view, it’s been a success and it’s just unfortunate that Trinidad got caught up in it, but everyone has signed up for the rules. So, I’m happy with where we are at right now.” Russell added.
The CPL has showcased some very high quality, even though some matches were interrupted due to rain. Ambati Rayudu and Blessing Muzarabani have left the tournament due to personal reasons. Benny Howell and Will Smeed have been called up as replacements for the St Kitts and Nevis Patriots (SNP).