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Cricket
Overview   Results   Laws of Cricket   Pitch
Match Structure Playing Time Asia Cup 2008 2011 World Cup

Cricket is a bat-and-ball sport contested by two teams, usually of eleven players each. A cricket match is played on a grass field, roughly oval in shape, in the centre of which is a flat strip of ground 22 yards (20.12 m) long, called a cricket pitch. A wicket, usually made of wood, is placed at each end of the pitch.

The bowler, a player from the fielding team, bowls a hard, fist-sized cricket ball from the vicinity of one wicket towards the other. The ball usually bounces once before reaching the batsman, a player from the opposing team. In defence of the wicket, the batsman plays the ball with a wooden cricket bat. Meanwhile, the other members of the bowler's team stand in various positions around the field as fielders, players who retrieve the ball in an effort to stop the batsman scoring runs, and if possible to get him or her out. The batsman — if he or she does not get out — may run between the wickets, exchanging ends with a second batsman (the "non-striker"), who has been waiting near the bowler's wicket. Each completed exchange of ends scores one run. Runs are also scored if the batsman hits the ball to the boundary of the playing area. The match is won by the team that scores more runs.

Cricket has been an established team sport for hundreds of years and is thought to be the second most popular sport in the world, after football (soccer). More than 100 countries are affiliated to the International Cricket Council, cricket's international governing body. The sport's modern form originated in England, and is most popular in the present and former members of the Commonwealth. In many countries including Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and the English-speaking countries of the Caribbean, which are collectively known in cricketing parlance as the West Indies, cricket is the most popular sport. In Australia, while other sports are more popular in particular areas, cricket has been described as the "national sport" and has had a role in forming the national identity. It is also a major sport in England, New Zealand, South Africa and Zimbabwe . Many countries also have well-established amateur club competitions, including the Netherlands, Kenya, Nepal and Argentina.

The sport is followed with passion in many different parts of the world. It has even occasionally given rise to diplomatic outrage, notoriously the Basil D'Oliveira affair (which led to the banning of South Africa from sporting events) and the Bodyline Test series in the early 1930s (which led to a temporary deterioration in relations between Australia and the United Kingdom).


ball

Overview

The aim of the batting team is to score as many runs as possible. A run is scored when both batsmen successfully move to their respective opposite ends of the pitch. (The batsmen will usually only attempt to score runs after the striker has hit the ball, but this is not required by the rules—the batsmen can attempt runs at any time after the ball has been bowled.) Runs are also scored if the batsman hits the ball to the boundary of the playing area (this scores six runs if the ball crosses the boundary without having touched the ground, or four runs otherwise), or if the bowler commits some technical infringement like bowling the ball out of reach of the batsman.
The aim of the bowler's team is to get each batsman out (this is called a "taking a wicket", or a "dismissal"). Dismissals are achieved in a variety of ways. The most direct way is for the bowler to bowl the ball so that the batsman misses it and it hits the stumps, dislodging a bail. While the batsmen are attempting a run, the fielders may dismiss either batsman by using the ball to knock the bails off the set of stumps to which the batsman is closest before he has grounded himself or his bat in the crease.

 

Other ways for the fielding side to dismiss a batsman include catching the ball off the bat before it touches the ground, or having the batsman adjudged "leg before wicket" (abbreviated "L.B.W." or "lbw") if the ball strikes the batsman's body and would have gone on to hit the wicket. Once the batsmen are not attempting to score any more runs, the ball is "dead", and is bowled again (each attempt at bowling the ball is referred to as a "ball" or a "delivery").

The game is divided into overs of six (legal) balls. At the end of an over another bowler from the fielding side bowls from the opposite end of the pitch. The two umpires also change positions between overs (the umpire previously at square-leg becomes the bowler's umpire at what is now the bowling end, and vice versa). The fielders also usually change positions between overs.

Once out, a batsman is replaced by the next batsman in the team's line-up. (The batting side can reorder their line-up at any time, but no batsman may bat twice in one innings.) The innings (singular) of the batting team ends when the tenth batsman is given out, leaving one batsman not out but without a partner. When this happens, the team is said to be "all out". (In limited overs cricket the innings ends either when the batting team is all out or a predetermined number of overs has been bowled.) At the end of an innings, the two teams exchange roles, and the side that has been fielding bats.

A team's score is reported in terms of the number of runs scored and the number of batsmen that have been dismissed. For example, if five batsmen are out and the team has scored 224 runs, they are said to have scored 224 for the loss of 5 wickets (commonly shortened to "224 for five" and written 224/5 or, in Australia, "five for 224" and 5/224).

The team that has scored more runs at the end of the completed match wins. Different varieties of the game have different definitions of "completion"; for instance there may be restrictions on the number of overs, the number of innings, and the number of balls in each innings.back top


Results
If the team that bats last is all out having scored fewer runs than their opponents, the team is said to have "lost by n runs" (where n is the difference between the number of runs scored by the teams). If the team that bats last scores enough runs to win, it is said to have "won by n wickets", where n is the number of wickets left to fall. For instance a team that passes its opponents' score having only lost six wickets would have won "by four wickets".

In a two-innings-a-side match, one team's combined first and second innings total may be less than the other side's first innings total. The team with the greater score is then said to have won by an innings and n runs, and does not need to bat again: n is the difference between the two teams' aggregate scores.


If the team batting last is all out, and both sides have scored the same number of runs, then the match is a tie; this result is quite rare in matches of two innings a side. In the traditional form of the game, if the time allotted for the match expires before either side can win, then the game is declared a draw.


If the match has only a single innings per side, then a maximum number of deliveries for each innings is often imposed. Such a match is called a "limited overs" or "one-day" match, and the side scoring more runs wins regardless of the number of wickets lost, so that a draw cannot occur. If this kind of match is temporarily interrupted by bad weather, then a complex mathematical formula, known as the Duckworth-Lewis method after its developers, is often used to recalculate a new target score. A one-day match can also be declared a "no-result" if fewer than a previously agreed number of overs have been bowled by either team, in circumstances that make normal resumption of play impossible; for example, wet weather.back top


Laws of cricket

The game is played in accordance with 42 laws, which have been developed by the Marylebone Cricket Club in discussion with the main cricketing nations. Teams may agree before a game to introduce other rules or alter some of the existing rules. In particular, there are a number of modifications to rules dictating fielding positions for professional limited overs matches

Other ways for the fielding side to dismiss a batsman include catching the ball off the bat before it touches the ground, or having the batsman adjudged "leg before wicket" (abbreviated "L.B.W." or "lbw") if the ball strikes the batsman's body and would have gone on to hit the wicket. Once the batsmen are not attempting to score any more runs, the ball is "dead", and is bowled again (each attempt at bowling the ball is referred to as a "ball" or a "delivery").

The game is divided into overs of six (legal) balls. At the end of an over another bowler from the fielding side bowls from the opposite end of the pitch. The two umpires also change positions between overs (the umpire previously at square-leg becomes the bowler's umpire at what is now the bowling end, and vice versa). The fielders also usually change positions between overs.

Once out, a batsman is replaced by the next batsman in the team's line-up. (The batting side can reorder their line-up at any time, but no batsman may bat twice in one innings.) The innings (singular) of the batting team ends when the tenth batsman is given out, leaving one batsman not out but without a partner. When this happens, the team is said to be "all out". (In limited overs cricket the innings ends either when the batting team is all out or a predetermined number of overs has been bowled.) At the end of an innings, the two teams exchange roles, and the side that has been fielding bats.

A team's score is reported in terms of the number of runs scored and the number of batsmen that have been dismissed. For example, if five batsmen are out and the team has scored 224 runs, they are said to have scored 224 for the loss of 5 wickets (commonly shortened to "224 for five" and written 224/5 or, in Australia, "five for 224" and 5/224).

The team that has scored more runs at the end of the completed match wins. Different varieties of the game have different definitions of "completion"; for instance there may be restrictions on the number of overs, the number of innings, and the number of balls in each innings.back top


The playing field

The cricket field consists of a large, often circular or oval-shaped, grassy ground. There are no fixed dimensions for the field but its diameter usually varies between 450 feet (137 m) and 500 feet (150 m). The perimeter of the field, known as the boundary, is marked, often with a rope or a painted line.

The pitch

Most of the action takes place in the centre of this ground, on a rectangular clay strip usually with short grass called the pitch. The pitch measures 10 × 66 feet (3.05 × 20.12 m). The longer dimension of the pitch is also a unit of length known as a chain.

At each end of the pitch three upright wooden stakes, called the stumps, are hammered into the ground. Two wooden crosspieces, known as the bails, sit in grooves atop the stumps, linking each to its neighbour. Each set of three stumps and two bails is collectively known as a wicket. One end of the pitch is designated the "batting end" where the batsman stands and the other is designated the "bowling end" where the bowler runs in to bowl.

The area of the field on the side of the line joining the wickets where the batsman holds his bat (the right-hand side for a right-handed batsman, the left for a left-hander) is known as the "off side", the other as the "leg side" or "on side".

Lines drawn or painted on the pitch are known as creases. Creases are used to adjudicate the dismissals of batsmen and to determine whether a delivery is legal.


The nature of the pitch

Pitches vary in consistency, and thus in the amount of bounce, spin, and seam movement available to the bowler. Hard pitches are usually good to bat on because of high but even bounce. Dry pitches tend to deteriorate for batting as cracks often appear, and when this happens spinners can play a major role. Damp pitches, or pitches covered in grass (termed "green" pitches), allow good fast bowlers to extract extra bounce and seam movement. Such pitches tend to offer help to fast bowlers throughout the match, but become better for batting as the game goes on.back top

Parts of the field

For some limited-over matches, there are two additional field markings. A painted oval is made by drawing a semicircle of 30 yards (27.4 m) radius from the centre of each wicket with respect to the breadth of the pitch and joining them with lines parallel, 30 yards (27.4 m) to the length of the pitch. This line, commonly known as the "circle", divides the field into an infield and outfield. Two circles of radius 15 yards (13.7 m), centred on each wicket and often marked by dots, define the "close-infield". The infield, outfield, and the close-infield are used to enforce fielding restrictions.

Placements of players

The batting team always has two batsmen on the field. One batsman, known as the "striker", faces and plays the balls bowled by the bowler. His or her partner stands at the bowling end and is known as the "non-striker".

The fielding team has eleven players on the ground. One of them is the current bowler. The wicket-keeper, who generally acts in that role for the whole innings, stands or crouches behind the wicket at the batting end. The captain of the fielding team spreads his or her remaining nine players — the fielders — around the ground, positioned according to the team's strategy.

Match structure

The Toss:The two opposing captains toss a coin before the match, and the captain who wins chooses either to bat or bowl first. The captain's decision is usually based on whether the team's bowlers are likely to gain immediate advantage from the pitch and weather conditions (these can vary significantly), or whether it is more likely that the pitch will deteriorate and make batting more difficult later in the game

Overs:Each innings is divided into overs, each consisting of six consecutive legal deliveries bowled by the same bowler. For the definition of illegal deliveries, see Extras. No bowler may bowl two consecutive overs, so at the end of the over the bowler takes up a fielding position and another player bowls.

Overs are bowled from alternate ends of the pitch; at the end of each over the umpires swap, the umpire at the bowler's end moving to square leg, and the umpire at square leg moving to the new bowler's end. The fielders also usually change positions.back top

End of an innings

An innings is completed if:

Ten out of eleven batsmen are out (dismissed); the team are said to be "all out".
The team has only one batsman left who can bat, one or more of the remaining players being unavailable owing to injury, illness or absence; again, the team is said to be "all out".
The team batting last reaches the score required to win the match.
The predetermined number of overs has been bowled (in a one-day match only, most commonly 50 overs).
A captain declares his team's innings closed (this does not apply in one-day limited over matches).

Playing time

Typically, two-innings matches are played over three to five days with at least six hours of cricket played each day. One-innings matches are usually played in one day, and often last six hours or more. There are usually formal intervals on each day for lunch and tea, and brief informal breaks for drinks. There is also a short interval between innings.

The game is usually only played in dry weather; play is also usually stopped if it becomes too dark for the batsmen to be able to see the ball safely. Some one-day games are now played under floodlights but, apart from a few experimental games in Australia, floodlights are not used in longer games. Professional cricket is usually played outdoors. These requirements mean that in England, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and Zimbabwe the game is usually restricted to the summer. In the West Indies, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh games are played in the winter. These countries' hurricane and monsoon seasons coincide with their summer.back top

Batting

The batsman may play a "shot" or "stroke", attempting to hit the bowled ball with the flat surface of the bat. If the ball brushes the side of the bat it is called an "edge". There is no requirement for the batsman to play a shot, and there is no requirement to run if the ball is struck. The batsman automatically scores runs if he hits the ball to the boundary. Shots are named according to the style of swing and the direction aimed. As part of the team's strategy, the player may bat defensively, blocking the ball downwards, or aggressively, hitting the ball hard to empty spaces in order to score runs.

Batsmen come in to bat in a batting order, decided by the team captain. The first two batsmen - the "openers" - usually face the most hostile bowling, from fresh fast bowlers with a new ball. The top batting positions are usually given to the most competent batsmen in the team, and the non-batsmen typically bat last. The batting order is not agreed beforehand, and if a wicket falls any player who has not batted yet may bat next.

Asia Cup 2008

Date Group Team v Team Stadium, City
24 June,2008 Group A Bangladesh v United Arab Emirates Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore
24 June,2008 Group B Pakistan v Hong Kong National Stadium, Karachi
25 June,2008 Group A Bangladesh v Sri Lanka Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore
25 June,2008 Group B Hong Kong v India National Stadium, Karachi
26 June,2008 Group B Pakistan v India National Stadium, Karachi
26 June,2008 Group A Sri Lanka v United Arab Emirates Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore
28 June,2008 Second Stage not defined vs not defined National Stadium, Karachi
29 June,2008 Second Stage not defined vs not defined National Stadium, Karachi
30 June,2008 Second Stage not defined vs not defined National Stadium, Karachi
02 July,2008 Second Stage not defined vs not defined National Stadium, Karachi
03 July,2008 Second Stage not defined vs not defined National Stadium, Karachi
04 July,2008 Second Stage not defined vs not defined National Stadium, Karachi
06 July,2008 Final not defined vs not defined National Stadium, Karachi

ICC announces umpire and referee appointments for Asia Cup 2008

The International Cricket Council (ICC) today announced the umpire and referee appointments for the Asia Cup which gets underway on 24 June in Pakistan.

Mike Procter of the Emirates Elite Panel of ICC Match Referees will oversee the matches staged in Lahore while Alan Hurst, also of the Emirates Elite Panel, will supervise the matches to be played in Karachi.

The ICC-appointed on-field umpires will be Simon Taufel of the Emirates Elite Panel of ICC Umpires and Brian Jerling, Ian Gould and Tony Hill of the Emirates International Panel of ICC Umpires.

Appointments for the second round matches will be announced in due course.

Asia Cup – Match Referees Mike Procter ( Lahore ) and Alan Hurst ( Karachi )
24 June – Bangladesh v UAE, Lahore ODI – Simon Taufel, Ian Gould; Pakistan v Hong Kong, Karachi (ODI) – Tony Hill and Brian Jerling
25 June – Bangladesh v Sri Lanka, Lahore (ODI) – Simon Taufel , Ian Gould; India v Hong Kong, Karachi (ODI) – Tony Hill and Brian Jerling
26 June – Sri Lanka v UAE, Lahore (ODI) – Simon Taufel , Ian Gould; Pakistan v India, Karachi (ODI) – Tony Hill and Brian Jerling

Pakistan security 'in order' for Asia Cup 2008

The Asian Cricket Council has declared adequate security arrangements are in place in Pakistan for next month's Asia Cup cricket tournament, an official said Monday.

The ninth edition of the Asia Cup will be held in Pakistan from June 24 to
July 6, for which security arrangements were discussed at an ACC meeting held in Colombo, Sri Lanka on Sunday.

"Everything is in order and we are satisfied with the security arrangements made by Pakistan. We hope that the event will be held in a befitting manner," ACC chief executive Ashraful Huq told AFP.

Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) officials made a presentation on the tournament, which will feature India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Hong Kong and the United Arab Emirates.

Security has been top of the agenda for international teams touring Pakistan in recent years.
Australia put off their March-April 2008 tour to the country over security fears amid a series of suicide bombings.

However security has improved since national elections held on February 18, prompting Australia to reschedule their tour in two phases. They will tour Pakistan for a one-day series in 2009 and then for Tests the following year.
Huq announced that an awards ceremony will also be held during the Asia Cup to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the ACC's formation.

"Awards will be given to top Asian cricketers and administrators of the past and present to mark the occasion and for this a four-member committee has also been formed," said Huq back top

2011 Cricket World Cup

The 2011 Cricket World Cup will be the tenth time this tournament has been held, and will be held in the four Asian Test cricket playing countries India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. The World Cup will be held during the months of February and March 2011.
The International Cricket Council announced its decision on which countries would host the 2011 World Cup on April 30, 2006.

Australia and New Zealand also bid for the tournament, and a successful Australian bid for the 2011 World Cup would have seen a 50-50 split in games, with the final still up for negotiation. The Trans–Tasman bid, Beyond Boundaries, was the only bid for 2011 delivered to ICC headquarters in Dubai ahead of the March 1 deadline. Considerable merits of the Australasian bid were the superior venues and infrastructure and the total support of both the New Zealand and Australian governments on tax and customs issues during the tournament, according to Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland. The New Zealand government had also given assurance that Zimbabwe would be allowed to compete in the tournament, following political discussions in the country whether their cricket team should be allowed to tour Zimbabwe in 2005. The Australasian bid also won the support of former West Indies captain Shivnarine Chanderpaul.

ICC President Ehsan Mani said the extra time taken by the Asian bloc to hand over its bid compliance book had harmed the four-nation bid. However, when the time came to vote, Asia won the hosting rights by ten votes to three. The Pakistan Cricket Board has revealed that it was the vote of the West Indies Cricket Board that swung the matter, as the Asian bid had the support of the four bidding countries along with South Africa and Zimbabwe. It was reported in Pakistani newspaper Dawn that the Asian countries promised to hold fund-raising events for West Indian cricket during the 2007 World Cup, which may have influenced the vote. However, chairman of the Monitoring Committee of the Asian bid, I. S. Bindra, said it was their promise of extra profits in the region of US$ 400 million that swung the vote, that there "was no quid pro quo for their support", and that playing the West Indies had "nothing to do with the World Cup bid".

International cricket politics lie at the heart of the dispute. Since cricket is the most popular sport in Bangladesh, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka, Asia is of fundamental financial importance to the International Cricket Council. However, historically, international cricket has been controlled by the Old Commonwealth nations of England, Australia, and New Zealand, supported by South Africa. The centre of cricketing politics has moved, over time, with the money, and the Asian nations, particularly India under the guidance of Jagmohan Dalmiya, looking for greater control in the direction of international cricket, and in 2005 Dalmiya said that the Indian subcontinent should host every third World Cup.

Structure

On 11 April 2005, Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Shaharyar Khan announced an agreement about the allocation of games, though no decision on the location of semi-finals and final has been made. Three months later, PCB director Abbas Zaidi confirmed that India had been chosen to host the final, while Pakistan and Sri Lanka would host the semi-finals. This will be the first time Sri Lanka will host a World Cup semi-final, after hosting two group games during the 1996 World Cup. The opening ceremony will take place in Bangladesh. Australian cricketer Brett Lee will be performing the theme song for this World Cup.

India

22 games (including the final)
Eden Gardens (Kolkata), Feroz Shah Kotla (Delhi), M. Chinnaswamy Stadium (Bangalore), M. A. Chidambaram Stadium (Chennai), Punjab C.A. Stadium (Mohali), Sardar Patel Stadium (Ahmedabad), Vidarbha C.A. Ground (Nagpur), Wankhede Stadium (Mumbai), Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium (Hyderabad).
The final in Mumbai at the Wankhede Stadium

Pakistan

14 games (including one semi-final)
Venues: Arbab Niaz Stadium (Peshawar), Gaddafi Stadium (Lahore), Iqbal Stadium (Faisalabad), Multan Cricket Stadium (Multan), National Stadium (Karachi), Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium (Rawalpindi)
One semi-final at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore.

Sri Lanka

9 games (including one semi-final)
Venues: R. Premadasa Stadium (Colombo), Sinhalese S.C. (Colombo)
One semi-final at the R. Premadasa Stadium in Colombo

Bangladesh

6 games (including the opening ceremony and opening match)
Venue (one from three will be picked): Bangabandhu National Stadium (Dhaka; the stadium was officially handed over to the football federation in March 2005), Narayanganj Osmani Stadium (Fatullah), Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium (Mirpur)
Late in 2007, the four host nations agreed upon a revised format for the 2011 World Cup, in which 14 teams will participate instead of 16.
The first round of the tournament will be a round-robin similar to the one held in South Africa in the 2003 edition in which the 14 teams are divided into 2 groups of 7 teams each. The 7 teams play each other once with the top four from each group qualifying for the quarter-finals.
The format ensures that each team gets to play a minimum of six matches even if they are ruled out of the tournament due to early defeats.

Semi-finals and Final

The semi-finals of the 2011 cricket World Cup will be played at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore, Pakistan, and the R. Premadasa Stadium in Colombo, Sri Lanka. The final will be played at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai, India.back top

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