Start Playing Cricket – The Rules

Cricket is possibly the most complicated game imaginable when it comes to rules. So let’s distil it down into a few basic concepts.

Cricket Ball Hitting WicketsIt’s a game played between two teams of eleven players on a large open field. Games consist of either one or two “innings” per side, in which every player bats until they are out. Players bat together in pairs, and can be dismissed in 10 different ways. These can be quite obvious, such as being caught out, when hitting the ball to an opponent without it bouncing, or “bowled” when an opposition bowler knocks over one of the three stumps or “wickets” that the batsmen protects. Then there are 8 other dismissals of varying complexity.

To score “runs”, a batsman hits the ball and must run the 22 yard length of the playing surface (“wicket”) before the fielder returns the ball. He may run up and down as many times as he can. Alternatively, should a ball reach the outer edge of the playing pitch, the “boundary”, the batsman scores 4 runs. Should he hit it over the edge without the ball bouncing, it’s 6! To end an innings, the fielding side must take 10 wickets, or the batting side can “declare” if they feel they have scored enough runs.

The most prestigious games played between countries are “test” matches which span up to 5 days, while shorter games can consist of 20 or 50 six ball “overs” per team. The winning team is the one which scores the most over the duration of the game.