ICC bans smart watches from field, dressing rooms

Asad Shafiq

"Smart watches in any way connected to a phone or WI-FI or in any way capable of receiving communications are not allowed and as such we will be reminding players that such devices must be surrendered along with their mobile devices on arrival at the ground on match days", the ICC added.

The ICC noticed that two Pakistan cricketers were wearing smartwatches during the first day of the Lord's Test and consequently announced the verdict to ban the use of the device.

An official of International Cricket Council's (ICC) anti-corruption cell has issued a warning to Pakistani players for wearing smart watches while playing the match.

"The ACSU officer came to speak to us and told us it's not allowed to wear them so we won't be wearing them", Hasan Ali said after the day's play.

In a bid to combat financial malpractice in cricket, players and match officials must hand over their mobile phones - and other devices capable of electronic transmission - before play to the appointed ICC anti-corruption officer present at every major worldwide match. They are then locked away and returned to them shortly after stumps.

The only Apple Watch variant capable of communicating independently from a smartphone, of course, is the LTE version of the Series 3, with previous generations (and the non-LTE model of the Series 3) relying on a Bluetooth connection to a phone in order to pull in the likes of texts and calls.

As per recent reports in Mumbai Mirror, it is understood that following the ICC's decision in the Lord's Test to ban the use of smartwatches, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has also disallowed the use of smartwatches in the IPL. "In effect, it is considered a phone unless "disabled" and just a watch", ESPNcricinfo quoted an ICC spokesman as saying.

As well as telling the time, such watches, when disabled, are also used for the equally legitimate objective of recording fitness data.

"We've got to get ourselves in a position to do that, that's a long way ahead".

The decision has been taken to avoid any allegations of match-fixing. Their own regulations may well be tightened to reflect that stance.

May 25, GMT 0745 The article was amended to reflect ICC's PMOA regulations.

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