A Beginner's Guide to the Game of Cricket

Cricket is an agelong game played with a ball and bat. The game involves two teams having eleven players each on a field. The centre of the field has a pitch that is 20 metres long with a wicket at each end. Each of the wickets has two bails put on three stumps. There are two roles taken up by each of the team. The roles include the batting side, and the bowling and fielding side. The manner of scoring for each team depends on the role they are playing. During the same match, there is a possibility of the team switching roles however, some certain requirements have to be met before this happens. Every player in a cricket team has a unique role that they play. In this guide, we will take you through what cricket is all about. With luck you'll learn enough about the game to develop a passion for it, to have a go play a match and perhaps be seen one day as a solid batsman in the world renowned Bombay Cricket Club.

Roles of players in a Cricket team

In cricket, a team is made up of 11 players and the role each player perform depends on whether they are batting or not. The player roles will include a captain, a wicketkeeper and several batsmen and bowlers. The ratio between batsmen and bowlers is not fixed however, most teams try to keep it as balanced as possible. The role of the captain is to make the call to bat or bowl at the toss of a coin before the game starts. The captain also set out in play tactics to organise the team during play. The wicketkeeper retrieves the ball every time it is bowled. The batsman scores the runs for the team while the bowler takes wickets by bowling the batter. When the team is not batting, the players take up the role of the fielder except the captain and the bowler.

![How cricket is played](/images/uploads/county-cricket-2639131_640.jpg)

How cricket is played

Prior to the commencement of a match, the captain of the two teams toss a coin to decide which team will bat for the first innings. Innings simply mean phases of a cricket game, just like soccer has 'halfs'. Instead of a referee, the officiating individual in a cricket game is called an Umpire. The whole idea is for one team to batt and score runs while the other team bowls and field the ball while dismissing the other team's batsmen. In fact, in some cricket games, a team must dismiss all the other team's batsmen to win. At the end of an inning, the teams switch role and play. There can be two to four innings in a single match. Matches with four innings can cover three to five days, while matches with just two innings can be completed in a single day.

Officiating and Governance in Cricket

In every standard cricket match, there must be an officiating crew that ensures that the game proceeds according to the cricket standards. The officiating is made up of Umpires. There can be 2 to 4 Umpires officiating in a match. However, in most cases, it is always 2. The role of the Umpire usually depends on which position the Umpire is. There are two positions you will find Umpires on the field. One stands at the end where the bowler is, while the other stands at the opposite side of the field facing the bowler usually at the square leg. The Umpire at the Bowler's end makes the decision while the second assists. Cricket also have referees, however, they mostly appear during Test cricket. The referees do not determine outcomes, their role is to enforce the rule of the game.

Governance in Cricket

Every international cricket event is governed by a globally recognised body named the International Cricket Council (ICC). This body has different members from different countries placed in hierarchy. As of 2017, there are 105 members in the International Cricket Council (ICC) that take part in Cricket games. Countries that are not part of the ICC cannot compete in any internationally recognized tournament. The hierarchy in ICC is divided into two, Full members and Associate members. There was a third hierarchy which is the affiliate members but it has since been removed and all the affiliate members automatically made associate members. There are 12 full members in the ICC and they are Australia, Bangladesh, England, India, New Zealand, Pakistan, South Africa, Sri Lanka, West Indies and Zimbabwe. Only these full members can take part in Test cricket which is considered the highest standard of the sport.

Last modified: 20 January 2021