What is cricket?

Even though it may look complicated and confusing at the first sight, cricket is very interesting and enjoyable sport. Roughly, it can be compared to baseball, although there are significant differences in their laws and rules.

Cricket field consists of a large circular or oval-shaped grassy ground whose diameter usually varies between 450 feet (137 m) to 500 feet (150 m).

The game is played between two teams, usually of eleven players each. In the same time there are 11 players of the so-called “fielding”team and 2 batsmen from the opposite team. These two batsmen stand on the opposite ends of the pitch – the central rectangular part of the field. A wicket, usually made of wood, is placed at each end of the pitch and used as a target.

The main goal of the batsman

Fielding team is comprised of 1 bowler, 1 wicket-keeper and 9 fielders positioned in the outfield.

The main goal of the batsman is to hit the ball delivered to him by the bowler in such manner so nobody of the opposite players can catch it. Then he runs to the opposite end of the pitch, exchanging place with his team mate. One such exchange is called “run”and is the basic point in cricket. The hits that reach the boundary of the field are automatically awarded four runs if the ball touches the ground en route to the boundary or six runs if the ball clears the boundary on the full.

The goal of the fielding team is to dismiss the batsman, which can be achieved in different ways, as well as to prevent the batting team from making runs by quick and agile reactions to the ball struck by the batsman.

Innings

Each team has its own innings, the period of play in which one team is batting and scores runs. In the second innings, the team that was fielding in the first one takes the batting role. Now, that team tries to score more runs than their opponents. Each innings is comprised of the number of overs, the sets of 6 correct deliveries of one bowler.  The innings can last 20, 30, 40, 45 or 50 overs, depending on the previous agreement or on the competition rules. Therefore, for example, one team is batting for 20 overs (120 deliveries) and during that time tries to make as much runs as possible, so as to make it more difficult to the opponents who will chase their score.
Generally speaking, half of the players are specialized in batting while the other half is in better terms with bowling. Nevertheless, all players are allowed to bowl and bat, with the exception of wicket-keeper who is not allowed to bowl.
Cricket is one of the most popular sports in the world. Highly appreciated respect for the opponent and the spirit of fair play make playing cricket very enjoyable experience.