Ground Report | New Delhi: Gender-Neutral Terms in cricket; The Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) in London, which follows the Laws of Cricket, has officially introduced a change in cricket terminology. The words ‘batsman’ and/or ‘batsman’ will be officially replaced with the gender-neutral term ‘batsman’ with immediate effect.
Gender-Neutral Terms in cricket
The word ‘batsman/batsman’ has been in use since 1744. However, changes have been implemented to make the game gender-inclusive and more welcoming to female players.
- In a statement on its website, the MCC said: “At the time of the final resale in 2017, following consultations with the International Cricket Council (ICC) and key figures in women’s cricket, it was agreed that the terminology would remain as ‘batsman’ and ‘batsman’ within the rules of the game.
- The changes announced today reflect the widespread use of the terms ‘batsman’ and ‘batsman’ in the field of cricket in the intervening period. Moving to ‘batsman’ is a natural progression, in line with the conditions of bowlers and fielders already within the ambit of the law.”
Additionally, Jamie Cox, Assistant Secretary for Cricket and Operations at the MCC, claimed that the change was introduced keeping in mind the development of women’s cricket over the years.
- “The use of the word batsman is a natural development in our common cricket language and many people involved in the game have already adopted this terminology,” he said in a statement. “This is the right time for this adjustment to be formally recognized and we are pleased, as custodians of the laws, to announce these changes today.”
Testing Ground at The Hundred
In the inaugural season of ‘The Hundred’ in England (a women’s and men’s 100-ball per innings tournament) this July, gender-neutral terms were tried during coverage.
- The term ‘batsman’ was commonly used in men’s and women’s competitions. Additionally, the fielding position ‘Third Man’ was referred to simply as ‘Third’.
- In a first Test match involving the English women’s team, the term ‘nightwatchman’ was also referred to as ‘nightwatch’ by broadcasters.
‘Batter’ is the only change
- Although other terms were used by broadcasters and news agencies, ‘batsman’ is the only change implemented by the MCC at this time.
- The fielding position ‘third man’, along with other cricket terms such as “night watchman” and ’12th man’, is not included in the Laws, and therefore any changes to such terms shall be within the control of the MCC as the custodian of the law. is out,” read a message posted by the MCC on its Twitter handle.
Meanwhile, 2017 Women’s World Cup winner Alexandra Hartley took to Twitter to reveal that she personally called them third man positions instead of ‘third/short third’ and ‘deep third’. She also tweeted that she “called him ‘Nightwatcher’ in early summer.”