Rules of Cricket

Cricket is a bat-and-ball game played between two teams of eleven players on a large, grassy, oval field. At the centre of the cricket ground is the pitch with two targets, one on each end of the pitch. These targets are called wickets and they consist of three stumps and two bails. Stumps are vertical wooden posts, 28 inches (71.1 cm) tall, hammered into the ground. Bails are two smaller wooden sticks placed horizontally on top of the stumps. The cricket pitch is the 22 yards (20.12 m) long and 10 feet (3.05 m) wide strip of the cricket field between the wickets.

Each phase of play in the match is called an innings. Depending on the sort of match, there can be two to four innings. In each innings, one team bats, attempting to score runs, while the other team bowls, attempting to stop the batsmen from scoring. During an innings, all eleven members of the fielding team and only two members of the batting team are on the field. When an innings ends, the teams switch roles. The aim of the game is to score more runs than the opponent.

At the beginning of the game, the batsman guards his wicket by using a bat to prevent the bowler from hitting it. If the bowler breaks the wicket, the batsman is out. The batsman aims to hit the ball, propelling it as far into the field as possible, and hopefully over the field boundary for scoring. After hitting the ball, the batsman runs to the other end of the pitch to score a run. The batsman attempts to make as many runs as possible before the fielding team returns the ball. If a player with the ball reaches the wicket before the batsman has completed the run, or if the fielding team catches the ball directly off the bat, the batsmen is out. When all batsmen are out, an innings is over and the opposing team takes on the batting role.

The team that scored more runs or lost less wickets is the final winner.