Concussion substitutes could be introduced during Ashes

Concussion substitutes could be introduced during Ashes

Bidding to make the sport safer, the ICC might introduce concussion substitutes in international cricket during next month's Ashes series before implementing it across all formats.

Introducing concussion substitutes has been a major bone ofcontention for the International Cricket Council (ICC) since the tragic deathof Australian cricketer Phil Hughes, who was struck on the head by a ballduring a Sheffield Shield match in November 2014.

According to an 'ESPNcricinfo' report, the issue is on theagenda at the ongoing ICC annual conference in London and changes to playingconditions are likely to be approved and implemented quickly, so that allmatches played in the World Test Championship, beginning Ashes series, willhave the same safety protocols in place.

Hughes' untimely death prompted the ICC affiliates to workon raising awareness about the short and long-term effects of a concussion.

In 2017, the ICC had started concussion substitutes indomestic cricket on a two-year trial basis.

Cricket Australia introduced concussion substitutes fortheir men's and women's domestic one-day cups and the BBL and Women's BBL forthe 2016-17 season.

But CA had to wait for the ICC's approval till May 2017before they could introduce it to the Sheffield Shield the following year andmaintain the competition's first-class status.

During Sri Lanka's Test tour of Australia earlier this year,both Kusal Mendis and Dimuth Karunaratne were struck on the head and were takento hospital, only to be later cleared to play.

The recently-concluded World Cup saw a concerted push toraise awareness around symptoms of and highlighting the dangers of continuingto play with concussion. There was also a range of protocols in place:every team had a nominated Team Medical Representative and there was anindependent match-day doctor at every game to provide support.

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