4. End Game

Google AdSense


The bowler's primary goal is to take wickets; that is, to get batsmen out. If a bowler can dismiss the more accomplished batsmen on the opposing team he reduces the opportunity for them to score, as it exposes the less skilful batsmen. A bowler is credited to having taken a batsman's wicket (got him dismissed) only if he gets the batsman out – caught; bowled; LBW; stumped or hit-wicket.

Highest no of wickets in an innings taken by a bowler: 4 in a Twenty20, 8 in an ODI and 10 in a test. Max career wickets taken: 14 in Twenty20, 502 in ODI and 800 in Tests as of 2010-07-25.

Their next task is to limit the numbers of runs scored per over they bowl. This is known as the Economy rate. Bowlers usually strive for low economy rates in most matches. If a bowler succeeds in having no run scored off an over, that over is termed as a maiden-over.

There are two main kinds of bowlers: pace bowlers and spin bowlers. Pace bowlers use the velocity of the ball as their main bowling type, whereas spin bowlers – spinners, spin the ball so that it changes direction after bouncing.

For serious infractions such as tampering with the ball, deliberate time-wasting, and damaging the pitch, the umpires may award penalty extras to the opposition; in each case five runs. A team need not be batting in order to receive penalty extras. However, penalty extras are not a common occurrence in games.


If any player gets injured during play, the umpire can, on his discretion allow a substitute to field for him. A substitute cannot bowl, bat, keep-wicket or act as a captain. In the event of a batsman being fit to bat but too injured to run, he may request the umpire and the fielding captain for a runner. After a batsman hits the ball, the runner's task is just to run between the wickets instead of the injured batsman. The runner chosen must be a batsman who has already been out, or bat low down the batting order. If the batsman is too injured to bat, he is declared retired – not-out.

In the case of a wicket-keeper being incapacitated, a player named in batting lineup must take up the wicket-keeping responsibilities. A substitute is a temporary role, and leaves the field if the injured player is fit to return.

The Captain

Unlike his counterparts in other sports, the captain's acumen in deciding the strategy is crucial to the team's success. The captain makes a number of important decisions, including setting field positions, shuffling the bowlers, taking the toss etc. Captains may change the field positions according to the batsman's skill, a bowler's type of bowling, a left or right-handed batsman etc.

The captains are allowed to place fielders anywhere in the ground they desire. Which positions are filled by players and which remain vacant is a tactical decision made by the captain of the fielding team. The captain may move players between fielding positions at any time except when a bowler is in the act of bowling to a batsman. There are a number of named basic fielding positions, some of which are employed very commonly and others that are used less often. However, fielding positions are not fixed, and fielders can be placed in positions that differ from the basic positions.

Parts of the field

An imaginary line divides the field in half down the long axis of the pitch. The half to the right of a right-handed batsman is the off-side while the half to his left is the on-side (also known as leg-side). This terminology is reversed for a left-handed batsman. The stumps are also named in this fashion – the off, middle and leg stump. In test-cricket as well as one-day cricket, the fielding team is not allowed to have more than two fielders in the quadrant behind the batting end and on the batsman's on-side. This is due to a controversial practice known as the leg-side theory or Bodyline which was used in the 1940s.

[Graphic: The cricket field divisions for limited overs matches]
  • Parts of the cricket field

For ODI and Twenty20 matches, there are two field markings. A painted oval is made by drawing a semicircle of 30 yards (27.4 m) radius from the centre of each wicket with respect to the breadth of the pitch and joining them with lines parallel, 30 yards (27.4 m) to the length of the pitch. This line, commonly known as the circle, divides the field into an infield and outfield. Two circles of radius 15 yards (13.7 m), centred on each wicket and often marked by dots, define the close-infield. The infield, outfield, and the close-infield are used to enforce fielder placement restrictions during sessions known as powerplays. Restrictions are put in place to encourage the batsmen to score runs freely and make the game more exciting.

In one-day cricket, no more than five fielders may field on the on-side. During a 50 over game, there are three powerplay sessions. For the first 10 overs, two players field in the outfield and two fielders are to be present in the close-infield. This setup does not include the bowler and wicket-keeper. After 10 overs are complete, the fielding captain needs to enforce two additional powerplays in blocks of 5 overs during the course of the game. The two fielders in the close-infield are not-required during the second and third powerplays. For the remaining 30 overs, no more than five fielders may field in the outfield which begins after the circle. The umpire calls a no-ball if the fielding team fails to comply with the restrictions.

In Twenty20 cricket, for the first six overs, a maximum of two fielders can field in the outfield. After six overs are complete, a maximum of five can be placed in the outfield.

Usually the fielders with the best reflexes are placed close to the batsman. Those players with a strong arm are placed near the boundary. The best fielder of the team is placed at a position known as 'point'.

End of an innings

An innings is completed if:–

  • Ten out of eleven batsmen are 'out'.
  • A team chasing a given target number of runs to win manages to do so.
  • The predetermined number overs are bowled (in a one-day match only, 50 overs; and Twenty20, 20 overs).
  • A captain declares his innings closed (this does not apply to ODI and Twenty20 matches).
  • A bowl-out incase of a tie in a Twenty20 match similar to a penalty shootout in football (soccer).

If the team batting last completes its innings and fails to equal or overtake the opposition's score, the opposing team is said to have won the match by m runs, where m is the difference in scores between the teams.

If the team batting last wins the match, they are said to have won the match by n wickets, where n is the number of batsmen who are not-out. This is calculated by subtracting the out batsman from 10. This not-out tally includes the batsmen who are batting at that time, the batsmen who have not yet batted and any batsmen who may have earlier retired "not-out".

In a tied Twenty20 match, the match goes into a bowl-out to determine the winner. Five bowlers from each side bowl a ball each at an unguarded wicket. A point is registered if the wicket is hit and the bails fall off. If the number of points is equal after the first five balls per side, the bowling continues and is decided by sudden death.

This ends the four part basic cricket introduction. If you are interested in learning a bit more about details such as kinds bowlers, differences between test and one-day cricket please continue on to part 2.
Google AdSense