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Fan voting for ‘mystery’ free hits and six wickets a side – Cricket West Indies announce ‘The 6ixty’

6ixty format West Indies
by Wisden Staff 2 minute read

We’re in the sixth month of 2022, and the game has thrown up another format at us: 6ixty, a new 60-ball competition, was unveiled by Cricket West Indies in collaboration with the CPL on Wednesday.

The format, which will be played ahead of the 2022 Caribbean Premier League, is to be packed with a number of quirky rules. According to the 6ixty website, “this revolutionary format will see brand new innovations that will change T10 cricket”.

Six men’s and three women’s teams will participate in the competition that will be played from August 24 to 28, 2022, as a joint venture between Cricket West Indies and CPL.

As the name of the ten-over format clearly suggests, the number ‘six’ is pivotal to the competition. Each batting team has six wickets each, with both sides getting two powerplay overs each. If a side manages to hit two sixes in the first two overs, an extra Power Play can be unlocked between over three and nine. Five overs, or 30 balls each, will be bowled from each end without changing sides. One bowler can only send down a maximum of two overs.

A slow over-rate from the bowling team will see them being penalised in a unique way: if unable to finish their overs within the allotted time, one fielder will be removed for the final six balls.

And to the most bizarre rule of them all: a “mystery free-hit” will be set in place, the timing of which will be based on a fan voting system.

A clip explaining the rules was unveiled on Wednesday with Chris Gayle (who else?) as the narrator. As expected, the announcement caused plenty of flutters among cricketing circles on social media.

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