Cricket news: Shane Warne calls for radical T20 change

Shane Warne has suggested tweaking the rules in T20 cricket, calling for bowlers to be given a maximum of five overs in an innings rather than four.

The Spin King believes that would level up the contest between bat and ball by allowing a team’s best bowlers to be used at the top of the innings before coming back at the death.

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Warne’s comments came during England’s six-wicket win over Australia in the second game of their three-match T20 series, as the hosts took a 2-0 lead following Sunday’s (AEDT) nailbiting two-run victory.

Warne was impressed with the new-ball work of England quicks Jofra Archer and Mark Wood, prompting him to wonder whether in-form bowlers could be given more time to shine in the game’s shortest format.

“What about four bowlers bowl five overs?” Warne said in commentary for Sky Sports.

“I just think it’s a better contest between bat and ball — you want your best bowlers bowling as much as you can as T20 is so much in the batsmen’s favour.

“When you get a couple of gun bowlers like this (Archer and Wood) you want to give them another over up front.

“Wouldn’t it be nice to give them five? You can obviously have eight bowlers bowl whatever but I would like to see bowlers be able to bowl five.

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Warne would love to see Jofra Archer given six more balls an innings.Source:Getty Images

“(England leg-spinner Adil) Rashid could bowl five overs in the middle, which would be a real good battle for the batsmen against spin, while you can bowl your quicks at the beginning and at the end.

“I reckon it gets rid of the bits-and-pieces (players) and you can pick your best batsmen and best bowlers when selecting your team.”

Warne’s fellow commentator, former England captain Michael Atherton, was intrigued by the proposal.

“It is an interesting idea. Shane always has a fertile imagination when it comes to cricket,” Atherton said. “I have been trying to think about the disadvantages. Would it play against genuine all-rounders?

“But I can see the advantages. It gives your dynamic, box-office players more of a chance to shape the game.”

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