A small slice of cricketing history will almost certainly be made on Sunday at one or more of the six fixtures in the opening round of the 2016 Specsavers County Championship – as for the first time in the world’s oldest first-class competition, the visiting captains will have the option of cancelling the toss.
Ian Bell at the Ageas Bowl, Chris Rogers at the Emirates Riverside, Gareth Batty at Trent Bridge and, in Division Two, Luke Wright at Northampton, Gareth Roderick in Chelmsford and Sam Northeast at Worcester will be the six men at the centre of attention at around 10.30am – weather permitting, of course.
If any of them want to bowl first – and the chances of that must be high in early April – then they will merely have to inform the umpires, and the home captain. Teamsheets will be exchanged in the middle as normal, and hands shaken, but the home captain’s coin will remain unused. The ground announcers will have to change their well-worn script. The scorecard will have a new entry – Toss, Not Necessary.
For the full ECB explanation, click here.