There will be some nervous looks skywards over the coming days in Melbourne with rain threatening the men’s T20 World Cup final between England and Pakistan at the MCG on Sunday, raising the prospect of the reserve day being needed and even a shared trophy.
There is currently a 95% chance of rain forecast for Sunday with between 15 and 25mm falling. “Very high (near 100%) chance of showers. The chance of a thunderstorm, possibly severe, with heavy falls possible,” the Bureau of Meteorology was saying as of Friday morning.
The reserve day is allocated on Monday, but that also has an uncertain forecast with again a 95% chance of rain and falls between 5 and 10mm.
For the knockout matches in the tournament a minimum of 10 overs per side is needed to constitute a match, compared to five overs during the group stages.
The first priority will be to complete a shortened match on Sunday if required, meaning the overs will be reduced before the reserve day is activated. If the game has started on Sunday but can’t be completed then it will resume on the reserve day from the position it was halted. Once the toss has taken place, the game is considered live.
If the game begins on Sunday and there is a reduction of overs but play does not have a chance to restart due to weather then the game will resume as a 20-over contest on the reserve day.
While there is only 30 minutes extra time allocated to the original day of the final, if the reserve day is used there are two hours extra available with play starting on the Monday at 3pm local time.
“If the reserve day is allocated, every effort will be made to complete the match on the scheduled day with any necessary reduction in overs taking place and only if the minimum number of overs necessary to constitute a match cannot be bowled on the scheduled day will the match be completed on the reserve day,” the playing conditions read.
“If the match has started on the scheduled day and overs are subsequently reduced following an interruption, but no further play is possible, the match will resume on the reserve day at the point where the last ball was played.”
Aside from the South Africa-Zimbabwe game in Hobart which was also a no result, the rest of the tournament has largely escaped the rain during what has been a wet start to summer across the east and south east of Australia.