The Rules Of Cricket

An outline of the rules of feild cricket. Includes a description of the terms used in cricket.

The aim in cricket is to score more runs than the opposite team. Each side has eleven players and the game is played on a cricket pitch 22 yards long. At each end of the pitch is a wicket made of three round stakes in the ground, approximately knee high, with two more pieces of wood on top, called the bails. The pitch is situated in the middle of a round, fenced off, ground.

The game begins with eleven players from one side (the fielding side) and two players on the other (the batting side) on the ground. The other nine players of the batting side wait off field for their turn The batting side has a player at each end of the pitch. The fielding side has one player (bowler) at the back of one end of the pitch, and one

behind the other end (wicket-keeper). The wicket-keeper normally wears gloves because of the hardness and speed of the bowled ball.

Each batter has a flat edged bat to use and padding on his shins and knees: the ball is the size of an American baseball and encased in hard leather. The bowler is allowed to bowl the ball from

beside the wicket as fast he likes towards the opposite wicket. The batter must protect his wicket with his bat. A bowler can bowl six times from one end (called an over)

before another bowler must bowl from the other end. Bowlers can bowl as many overs as they wish but cannot bowl two overs in a row.

When the ball is bowled and the ball is hit away by the batsman they can both run from one wicket to the other, passing each other. One run is scored for each length of the

pitch run. If the batsman hits the ball and it hits the fence, he receives four runs without having to run between the wickets. If the ball makes contact with or is hit over the fence without first touching the ground, six runs are received.

If, when the ball is bowled and before it is touched by a fieldsman other than the bowler, the ball hits the wicket knocking off the bails, then the batsman is out, to be

replaced by another team mate. Batsman are also given out if, when they hit the ball, a fieldsman catches the ball without it first hitting the ground; when the wicket is hit by the ball thrown by a fieldsman when the batsman is not standing close enough to the wicket (the batsman must be between the wicket and a chalk line a metre from the

wicket to be safe); if the batsman knocks the bails off the wicket with his own bat or body; or if the ball hits the batsman on the leg when it was obviously going to hit the

wicket. When ten of the eleven players are out, this is called the end of the innings and the teams swap.

Each team is allowed 2 innings each, the team with the most runs at the end is the winner.

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