The rules of cricket are quiet complicating, but if you just follow me, I will guide you through them quiet easily. And along with the rules I will guide you through some of the terms used in cricket. So here we go:
A cricket match goes like this. First, each team captain selects his 11 players who will play the game. Then, a coin toss is played between the 2 team captain.The captain who wins may decide whether to bowl or bat first. Then that team which has been told to bat first sends out their 2 openers. All 11 of the bowling side’s players come out to field. They are in charge of the ball. It is their duty to stem the flow of runs scored by the batsman as much as possible, and attempt to get all the oppositions’ 10 batsmen out. One player out of the 11 will come to bowl. He must bowl an over (6 legal deliveries), then give way to another bowler. No bowler is allowed to bowl more than 1 over consecutively (the number of overs a bowler can bowl in a match will vary in each format of the game).
The basic aim of the game is to score more runs than your opponent. You can score runs in many ways. They are:
- Just running
- Hitting boundaries
The first way is the most basic and easy way to get runs. You just simply tap the ball with your bat and run to the other end of the pitch. You can run more than 1 run if you wish, but at your own risk.
The second way (in my opinion the most classy), is to hit boundaries. To do this you must hit the ball in such a way so that it hits the boundary line. If it pitches before hitting the line you get 4 runs, and if it crosses the line directly, you get 6 runs.
The last way to get runs is by extras. Extras are runs given unnecessarily by the fielding side through wides, no-balls, overthrows, and a various number of other reasons.
A wide is when a bowler bowls the ball where it cannot be reached by the batsman. There are guidelines on the pitch that symbolize the bowler’s boundaries, but these are subject to change if the batsman moves around in his crease.
A no-ball can be given for various reasons, and is one of those rules that is used to enforce discipline on the fielding side. The most common instances of a no-ball are:
- when a bowler oversteps either the popping crease (one in front of the stumps) or the return crease (the ones on either side of the stumps). If an overstep no-ball is bowled, the batting team is awarded 1 extra run and a free hit (you can only get run out on a free hit), and the bowler has to bowl the ball again.
- when a bowler bowls above waist level (for fast bowlers) or above shoulder level (for slow bowlers) without pitching. If an over-the-waist no ball is bowled, then the batting side gets 1 extra run, and the bowler receives a warning and must bowl the ball again. If a bowler receives 2 such warnings he may be banned from b0wling for the rest of the match.
Overthrows are when the fielding side fumbles in the field and allows the batsman to take extra runs. Also if a fielder tries to hit the stumps and misses, and the ball runs away to the boundary, it’s an overthrow 4.
Another way for a team to gain runs is through penalty. If the bowling side does something inappropriate, then he is normally given a warning. Should he do it again, however, the batting team will be awarded a few runs (normally 5). These runs will count as extras. However, penalty runs can also be deducted from the batting side if they do something inappropriate.
Wickets are something like the lives of the team. Each team has 10 wickets, and each of the 11 batsmen have 1 wicket each, to make sure that there are always 2 batsmen at the crease until 10 wickets go down. Taking wickets is, in my opinion, the best way to slow the batting team’s progress. There are many ways to get wickets. Here they are:
- Run Out
- Hit Wicket
- Obstructing the field
- Getting timed out
Bowled is basically if the ball hits the stumps without making contact with any member of the fielding team. It is the most basic way to get a batsman out. However, if the bails of the stumps don’t fall, the batsman is not out, whether or not the ball hit the stumps.
Caught is the most common way in which batsmen get out. If the ball hits the batsman’s bat or glove and a fielder catches without the ball touching the ground, the batsman is out caught.
LBW, or leg before wicket, is as the name implies; if the batsman blocks the stumps with his leg, he is out. However, there are a number of conditions that have to be fulfilled. For example, the ball should be judged to have carried on to hit the stumps, the ball must not have pitched outside leg-stump, and more. Also if the ball touches the bat before hitting the pad, it’s not out as the batsman is within his rights to kick the ball from his stumps once he’s touched the ball with his bat.
Stumping, in my opinion, is the most difficult way to get wickets, but the most beautiful when done properly. To get a stumping, the bowler must tempt the batsman to come out of his crease and miss, so the keeper can get the ball and remove the bails. It can also happen when the ball ricochets off the keeper’s pads and removes the bails. As long as the batsman doesn’t touch the bat and it’s the keeper who dislodges the stumps, it’s a stumping.
Run Out is when the batsmen attempt to take a run, but for whatever reason the batsman fails to get inside the crease before the fielding side gets the ball and dislodges the stumps. Getting a batsman run out is difficult, because it takes a brilliant fielding effort or a miscommunication between the batsmen. Run out is also the only way to get a batsman out on a free hit delivery.
Obstructing the field is when the batsman deliberately stops the ball from reaching it’s destination. This is very rare as most cricketers don’t bother doing it as there’s always the chance that the ball will miss the stumps or there will be a comedy scene. Also if they do it will tarnish their reputation in terms of good sportsmanship. Even in the rare occasions on which it happens, the batsmen is usually just trying to defend himself from the throw which is coming his way.
And last but not least, we have timed out. It is as the name implies; should the batsman fail to arrive on the pitch to bat within a short period of time, he will be declared out.
Now here’s a video showing nearly all the stuff we have covered so far:
Power Plays are a set number of overs during which only 2 or 3 fielders are allowed outside the 30-yard circle, depending on the format. In the ODI format, there is a mandatory power play which goes from overs 1-10. Then the bowling and batting captains may each evoke a power play of 5 overs at will, but it cannot be evoked before the 16th over and must be evoked before the 41st over. During these 20 overs of power play, there may be no more than 3 fielders outside the 30-yard circle. In the T20 format however, there is only 1 power play, which is from overs 1-6, during which only 2 fielders may be outside the 30-yard circle. There is no power play in Tests. Also, during non-power play overs, in both T20s and ODIs, only 5 fielders may be outside the 30-yard circle