There are certain big hitter sports, excuse the pun, that everyone should know at least the basics of. So if you’re a sports fan and you have this little black hole in your sporting knowledge, check out this cricket for beginners fact sheet and make sure you know how the game works. Then you can start enjoying what so many people all over the world are obsessed about. Cricket.

1. There are 22 players on the field at any given time

I don’t know about you, but I’m feeling 22… If anyone else got that Taylor Swift reference, congratulations. If not, let’s move swiftly along (lol). So a cricket match is played between two teams. Those teams each have 11 players on the field during the game. So therefore, you’ll have 22 players in total to keep track of during a game.

2. A cricket pitch is 22 yards long

Here we go again with that magic number! Cricket pitches are 20 meters, aka 22 yards, in length.

3. 3 stumps + 2 bails = 1 wicket

A wicket is three stumps with two bails on top. That’s like cricket for beginners 101. There are two wickets at each side of a cricket pitch. That’s it. Or is it? No, it isn’t. They’re essential to the game of cricket because they’re one of the major ways scoring is determined during a match.

4. Getting the runs in cricket is a good thing

Apologies for the juvenile joke. But what we need to tell you is that cricket scores are called runs. That’s because the batting side has to run from one wicket to another after they hit the ball.

5. Right outta the park

Apart from running between wickets, you can also score during the game by knocking that ball right outta the playing field. If the ball doesn’t bounce, you get six points. If it does, you get four.

6. Each sides take turns batting and fielding

What you need to know about cricket for beginners is that during the game, the two different teams take turns playing two different roles. They’re called batting and fielding. Put simply, the batting side is on the offensive and the fielding side is defensive. The only side that can score is the batting side and the fielding side’s whole job is to prevent this from happening.

7. Batters can be ousted from the field

During a game of cricket, a batter can be told “See ya later” for a few different reasons. This includes when the ball hits the wicket and the bails fall down, aka being bowled. It can happen if the fielding side catches the ball before it hits the ground. And it can also happen if the ball hits the wicket before a batter crosses the crease.

8. The teams change places when 10 batters are out

The batting and fielding sides change places when 10 batters are out from the batting side.

9. Umpires and referees (sometimes) call the shots

During a cricket match, two umpires oversee the game. And they’re usually joined by a third umpire who helps them make the decision. However, in an international game, there is also a referee who is hired by the International Cricket Council to cast an eye over proceedings too.

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