According to the current law (41.7), any delivery above waist height is considered 'dangerous' and 'unfair' irrespective of whether or not it could injure the batsman.
The Law 41.7.1 states:
"Any delivery, which passes or would have passed, without pitching, above waist height of the striker standing upright at the popping crease, is to be deemed dangerous and unfair, whether or not it is likely to inflict physical injury on the striker. If the bowler bowls such a delivery the umpire shall immediately call and signal No ball. When the ball is dead, the umpire shall caution the bowler, indicating that this is a first and final warning. The umpire shall also inform the other umpire, the captain of the fielding side and the batsmen of what has occurred. This caution shall apply to that bowler throughout the innings."
However, the law, which was published in October 2017 as part of the first code revision since 2000, was considered too harsh particularly for junior cricketers.
"Since its introduction, feedback has been received which suggests strongly that the new sanctions were overly severe (especially to younger bowlers)," the MCC said on Wednesday (November 14). "In many cases, Governing Bodies introduced their own playing conditions that rendered the new Law irrelevant.
"In response to this feedback, the Laws sub-committee has reviewed Law 41.7 and - with the support of the Cricket committee, World Cricket committee and MCC Committee - agreed that it should be adjusted, with effect from 1st April 2019, to allow umpires to make a more subjective decision over which deliveries are dangerous."
The new rule will be confirmed in January 2019 and adopted from April next year.
"As is already the case with short-pitched bowling, the umpire will now decide whether a full-pitched delivery is dangerous, based on various factors such as
the speed or direction of the ball, repeated delivery of full tosses and the ability of the batsman," the MCC said.
"There is no longer a ‘catch-all’ sanction, but umpires are instead required to use their best judgement to determine whether a delivery is dangerous. If it is
dangerous, it will lead to a first and final warning. If not, it will still be a No ball, but there will be no warning."
First Published: November 15, 2018, 10:44 AM IST