Game Guide

Cricket, also known as the gentlemen's game, was first played in the 16th century in England. A bat and ball are the two major components used to define the sport.

Cricket is played between two teams where each team consists of eleven players performing various roles.  Cricket is played on a circular or oval shaped ground and the centre is the location of the 22-yard cricket pitch. This pitch has a major role in determining the outcome of the match as judged by two on-field umpires.

The British took the game of cricket around the globe. In 1877, the first test match between England and Australia was played at Melbourne. Cricket was included for the first time in the Summer Olympics in 1900 but due to the length of a match, it was removed.

The International Cricket Council (ICC) and the Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) maintain the rules of cricket also known as the Laws of Cricket.

Understanding Cricket
Quick Start to Playing Cricket

Each team has to bat and bowl at least once depending upon the format of the game. The objective of the team batting first is to score as many runs as they possibly can. The team batting second has to score at least one more run than their opponent to win the match.

Cricket consists of three parts: batting, bowling and fielding.  Batting is the part of the game where the batsmen wearing heavily padded equipment play to score runs. A batsman has two areas to score on, the offside and the onside.

Bowling is the part where the bowlers look to use the 5.5-ounce leather ball to dismiss the batsman. There are ten ways of dismissing a batsman in cricket. 

Fielding, although not as important as the other two, includes the job of preventing the opposition from making runs and catching the ball to dismiss the batsman. Fielding can play a useful part in the overall result.

Cricket is a sport dependent on weather and is usually played in the summer months in Europe, Africa, Australia and New Zealand.

3 Cricket Formats
Cricket Game Guide

Test Cricket

The first and original format is Test Cricket, which can last up to five days, sometimes without a result. Each team can have two innings of batting and bowling. 


The third format is Twenty-Twenty or T20 that was first played in England in 2003. It is the most popular format of cricket wherein each team bats and bowls for 20 overs only.


One-Day Internationals (ODI's) were introduced in 1971 and produce a definitive result over the course of a single day with each team batting and bowling for 50 overs. 

Cricket Glossary
Cricket Lingo from A to Z


All Out
refers to a team having lost all ten of its wickets in an innings.
All Rounder
a very valuable cricket player who can both bat and bowl well.
the act of bowlers or fielders shouting at the umpire to ask if the batsman is out.
Arm Ball
bowled ball with no spin that remains on a straight line.
Asking Rate
required runs per over for a win.


refers to the 5.5-ounce leather ball with a cork core.Tampering
to change the condition of the cricket ball artificially is an illegal act.
the wooden equipment with which the batsman strikes the ball.
term for field position calculated to catch the ball that pops up off the bat.
a very dangerous ball that does not bounce after leaving the bowler's hand and reaches the batsman above the waist.
pitch that is to the batsmen's advantage and not to bowlers.
pitched ball passing by a batsman's chest or head area.
the perimeter of the playing area often used in reference to four or six runs scored by the batsman.
term for padding/protector used by batsmen and wicketkeepers.
Buffet Ball
very poor delivery that allows the batsman to help himself to some easy runs.
Bump Ball
played ball hitting the ground and quickly caught by a fielder.
ball untouched by batsman resulting in a run scored.


brief but very fast scoring innings by the batsman.
Carry the Bat
refers to an opening batsman who does not remain until the end of the innings.
attack by batsman departing from the crease and possibly converting the ball into a half volley.
term for bowler who moves the ball utilizing his chest, rather than side on.
term for bowler who throws the ball.
Closing the Face
hitting the ball to the leg side by rotating the bat inwards.
Corridor of Uncertainty
refers to batsman's off stump decision to leave or play the ball.
Cross Bat
term for holding the bat horizontally and striking the ball that can result in hooks, pulls and/or cuts.


Dead Ball
when there are no runs to be scored or wickets taken.
occurs when an inning ends prior to all batting players counted as out.
Dibbly Dobbly
a bowler of medium pace without variations.
refers to a very easy catch for a fielder.
bowled delivery curving away from a right-hander and does not turn.
cricket game score of 0.
Duckworth Lewis
refers to the method of calculating targets during rainy matches.

E - F

Extras Runs
not scored by batsmen.
a very good wicket to bat on, offering little help to the bowlers.
Free Hit
a penalty delivery in which the batsman can only be run out.
Full Toss
ball that does not bounce before reaching the designated batsmen.


jargon for repair of grooves in the pitch caused by the ball or studs using the bat.
Good Length
refers to the bowler's aim to force the batsman to decide between play forwards or back.
jargon for difference that turns into the right-hander and away from the left-hander.
cricket game ball that barely bounces.


Half Volley
ideal length for driving, but falls short of a full toss.
Handled the Ball
a deliberate hand-touch by a batsman that could result in an out.
Hat Trick
three wickets taken by a bowler in three consecutive deliveries.
Heavy Ball
unexpected strong motion that hits the bat.
Hit the Ball Twice
a deliberate double strike by a batsman to gain runs that could result in a given out.
Hit the Deck
movement that results in an additional bounce from the pitch.

I - L

Inside Out
ball movement past the off resulting in the batsman playing open-chested.
Inside-out Shot
term for batsman's stroke around leg stump into the off side.
an unplayable delivery by the bowler.
Leading Edge
ball is hit in the opposite direction intended by the batsman.
term for when batsmen run after the ball that has deflected off the pad. Not counted against the bowler.
ball movement from leg to off for a right-hander.
term for ball movement that moves away from the batsman towards the offside.
area of pitch behind the batsman's legs.
described as short, full or good, this term refers to ball pitches down the wicket.
surprising upward movement of the ball.
attack utilized by bowler.
very easy ball to hit.
Long Hop
term for ball that pitches short and is available to hit.
flight path of the ball.

M - N

refers to a bowler who has taken five wickets in an inning.
ball delivery method to connect well. Middle also refers to centre of the field.
A complicated batting track where proper shots are difficult to put into play.
New Ball
put in play usually after every 80 overs.
faint edge off the bat.
term for promotion of a non-batsman into the final overs.
illegal delivery, usually a bowler error.
movement of the ball around and into gaps.


act of blocking a fielder to prevent a catch being made or a run-out being affected.
Occupy the Crease
occurs when a batsman remains at the wicket but scores slowly.
ball turning into the right-hander from off to leg.
off break delivered with speed.
Off the mark
first run score by batsman.
side of the pitch, either to batsman's right or left.
same as leg-side.
On the Up
hitting the ball while on the rise.
occurs for obstruction, bowled, hit the ball twice, hit wicket, handled the ball, caught, stumped, run out and timed out.
Outside Edge
hit on the edge of the bat furthest away from the body.


terms for a sweep shot.
jargon for a batsman who gets a duck in both innings.
Pie Chucker
a part time bowler who bowls slowly.
batsman promotion to go for some quick runs.
term for the bounce of the ball.
Play On
batsman hitting the stumps and he is bowled.
ball pitch that proves to be complicated to score quickly.


Return Crease Parallel
area which bowler's back foot must land, otherwise a no-ball is called.
Rip Big
wrist action resulting in superior revolutions on the ball.
Ring Field
standard fielding arrangement.
term for flattening the playing surface with a heavy roller.
term for marking the perimeter of the field.
pitch area that is messy because of bowler follow-through play.
term for a pre-determined time or maximum number of overs set near the end of the game or day.
Run Rate
the number of runs required per over.
bowlers position while awaiting ball delivery.
term for substitute cricket player for an injured batsman.


stitching located between the two halves of a cricket game ball.
easy fielder catch.
refers to the verbal abuse used to disrupt the cricket player's concentration.
Standing back/Standing up
term for two wicketkeeper positions for fast bowler or spinners respectively.
defense of one's wicket.
Strike rate
number of runs a batsman scores per 100 balls.
another name for extras conceded by the bowling team.
term for ball movement that curves through the air rather than off the seam.

T - Z

Timed Out
a mode of dismissal for a batsman failing to appear on the ground two minutes after a batsman has been dismissed.
a robust ball hit.
term for graph of region where a batsman has scored runs.
term for batsman giving himself out without an umpire's decision.
Walking Wicket
a batsman who could get out of any delivery.
term for distance of 22 yards between the stumps.
ball delivery pitched too far away for the batsman to score resulting in an extra and a re-bowl.
Wrist Spin
ball delivery by a flick of the wrist as opposed to a tweak of the fingers.
a ball with a very low bounce, said to be almost running along the ground.