Is the 100 too long? Maybe it’s time for the SIX!

What a finish in the World Cup Final.

Right down to the final ball, and the match is tied after 50 overs each.

Still tied after the Super Over.

Let’s quietly forget the “total boundaries scored” tie-break.

But that Super Over. All of the excitement of cricket, condensed into just 6 balls per team.

When the ECB’s 100 format was proposed, I had jokingly commented that it might still be a bit too long, and suggested that something akin to street20 might be the ultimate short format to “bring back the masses”.

Now, I wonder if there is something that can be lifted from the Super Over format.

So — the Teesra presents…

The SIX!

Immediately after the game finished on Sunday evening, I began thinking about a “super over challenge” format, specifically for a u9s Club Day comp I am running in August.

First thoughts were, perhaps, a little too complicated…

But how about running a SuperOver Challenge?

aka The SIX!

Pools of 8 players, each pair faces a ball from the other 6 players (so their SuperOver is bowled by 6 different players — participation is key); no batter to face more then two consecutive deliveries.

24 balls to complete a pool; perhaps 20 minutes action, if the players stay focused and no-one loses a ball in the nettles at cow corner.

Set-up can follow the excellent ECB formats for junior cricket.

Otherwise, it’s proper cricket (batting, bowling fielding), just condensed; any additional “local” rules and constraints (e.g. fielders must start on the boundary OR cannot start within 10m of the boundary) can be applied, but I’ll probably play this “straight”, at least to start with.

Top score in the pool progresses to the A final against the winners of other pools, second place to the B final etc. Or some form of “waterfall” tournament structure (as used in rugby7s).

Or simply replay the original pool — 4 points for winning, 3 for coming second, 2 for third, 1 for fourth place, and aggregate scores over the day.

It could run with more than 8 players per pool, but with more than 10 there could be too much standing around waiting to bowl. With fewer than 8, the fielders will have to work very hard indeed.

With odd numbers — coach to bowl a “superBall”? Not sure yet how to accommodate a 1-player batting “pair”…she might be at an advantage (gets to face all 6 delivers in the SuperOver; run outs only at one end) or a disadvantage (all-against-one).

I had planned to trial this format at this evening’s regular Club practice, but the weather might be against us tonight. So the first run out might be at the Colts’ Day.

I’ll report back.

Published by Andrew Beaven

Cricket coach, fascinated by the possibilities offered by the game. More formally - ECB level 2 cricket coach; ECB National Programmes (All Stars & Dynamos Cricket) Activator Tutor; Chance to Shine & Team Up (cricket) deliverer; ECB ACO umpire.

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