New 60-ball tournament to launch in Caribbean

A new 60-ball cricket format, which includes the chance for fans to vote for a batter to have a ‘free hit’ where they can’t be dismissed, will launch in the Caribbean in August.

The 6ixty is being organised by Cricket West Indies (CWI) and the Caribbean Premier League (CPL).

Men’s and women’s teams are to compete.

“I am really excited about the innovation, excitement and entertainment,” said CWI president Ricky Skerritt.

The tournament will introduce new rules with the aim of making the game faster, including:

  • Each batting team has six wickets – at the fall of the sixth wicket they are all out.
  • Each batting team has two powerplay overs. They can unlock a third powerplay by hitting two sixes in the first 12 balls. This extra powerplay over can be taken at any time between overs 3-9.
  • There will be 30 balls bowled from one end before the action switches to the other end for the final 30 balls.
  • The 30 balls will be delivered as five separate overs, with no bowler being able to bowl more than two overs for the innings.
  • If teams do not bowl their overs within the allotted time a member of their team is removed from the field for the final six balls.
  • Fans will vote for the timing of a ‘mystery free hit’ where a batter can’t be dismissed by the bowler

Organisers have said some of the world’s best cricketers will be involved, though have not said who.

CPL chief executive officer Pete Russell said: “This is a hugely exciting moment for both CPL and Cricket West Indies as we create a tournament that will see cricket fans brought closer to the game.

“There will be world-class men’s and women’s cricketers taking part in a fantastic event for the Caribbean, and this combined with cutting-edge innovations, signals a great moment for all fans of West Indian cricket.”

Cricket is trying to find new audiences and one way in which the sport is aiming to do so is through new formats. The Hundred, a 100-ball tournament, was introduced in England and Wales in 2021 in a bid to open the sport to new fans. (Courtesy BBC)

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