Worcestershire ditch keeper as Dhoni gives idea for controversial ploy:
England's Moeen Ali hit a dominant 90 off 50 balls - after being dropped before scoring - and took two catches to give Worcestershire their second NatWest T20 Blast victory by 14 runs over winless Northamptonshire at Wantage Road.
But the game will be remembered for one of the strangest field placings seen in English cricket for years.
During Worcestershire's stint in the field, their captain Daryl Mitchell asked wicketkeeper Ben Cox to ditch his gloves and pads and become an extra fielder - leaving no one behind the stumps.
The ploy developed as an extension of MS Dhoni's decision to stand back to the spinners while keeping for India in the Test series in England last summer.
The umpires, after consultation, allowed it. "In a game when you're trying to stop the opposition scoring, it's a legitimate tactic," Steve Rhodes, the Worcestershire director of cricket, said.
Moeen's second over - the 16th of the innings - saw Cox remove gloves and pads and go to fly-slip, with no one standing up to the stumps. Umpires Nick Cook and Graham Lloyd conferred at length and allowed play to continue, with Mitchell persisting in the tactic for the spinners from thereon.
"One of the things I challenged the coaches in the winter to do, was to try and come up with some ideas that might just knock the opposition off their guard a little bit," Rhodes said. "It came about when I watched MS Dhoni stand back to the spinners for India and I thought that was a great idea. Afterwards, he said he wanted another catcher around the corner and he felt he could do that himself, standing back. That's how it started us thinking about it."