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JIMINY CRICKET

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Jun 14, 2014, 9:10:03 AM6/14/14
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WORCESTERSHIRE, England (Rueters)-- We
congratulate the Los Angeles Kings for
winning the Stanley Cup but, quite frankly,
we don't give a rat's ass.

You see, hockey is too damn complicated
and downright confusing for us here in Jolly Old.
<
We prefer the simple life -- therefore, our
favorite spot is cricket, even simpler than soccer.
<
Now we know some of you folks in Ameriker
think cricket is too blooming confusing. But you're
dead wrong and, in fact, it's a lot less complicated
than baseball, basketball, football and even golf.
<
Cricket, you see, actually is very, very simple.
And, to prove it, we present a brief educational
article written by Ed Conrad (See photo), one of the
world's internationally acclaimed experts.
<
http://i1.sndcdn.com/avatars-000006750987-r04fgp-crop.jpg?30a2558
<
The lesson begins with a detailed map of
a cricket field showing where the players play and
their positions (very easy to remember).

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-bFus7_Di4d0/TcKvWupu5MI/AAAAAAAAA-M/igC887347OE/s400/cricket-field-positions.gif
<
< =================
<
< THE PLAYERS
/ \ 1 wicket keeper
/ \ 2 first slip
/ e h \ 3 second slip
/ \ 4 third slip
/ \ 5 gully +
/ \ 6 point +*~
/ \ 7 cover +
/ 2 j \ 8 extra cover +
| 3 1 d | 9 mid-off +*
| 5 | a mid-on +*
| 6 # i c | b mid-wicket +
| # | c square leg
| 7 # b | d leg slip
| 8 | e third man
| | f long off
\ 9 a / g long on
\ / h fine leg
\ / i bat-pad
\ / + deep (near boundary)
\ / * silly (near batsman)
\ / f g / ~ backward (more up)
\ / e.g. deep backward square leg
<
Other modifiers used to qualify positions:
<
SQUARE: close to a line perpendicular to the pitch,
through the batsman;

FINE: close to a line straight along the pitch;

SHORT: close to the batsman.
<
< UMPIRE SIGNALS
<
The umpires signal various events with gestures, as follows:
<
< Out
When a batsman is out, the umpire making the decision raises one hand
above his head, with the index finger extended.
< Not Out
There is no formal signal to indicate that a batsman is not out. The
umpire can either shake his head 'no' or not signal at all.
< Four
A four scored by the ball reaching the boundary is signalled by an arm
extended horizontally and waved briefly back and forth in a horizontal
arc.
< Six
A six is signalled by raising both arms straight over the head.
< No Ball
A no ball is signalled by holding an arm out horizontally.
< Wide
A wide is signalled by holding both arms out horizontally.
< Byes
Runs scored as byes are signalled by raising one arm over the head,
palm open.
< Leg Byes
Leg byes are signalled by raising one leg and tapping the knee with
one hand.
< Dead Ball
If the umpire has to signal dead ball to prevent the players from
assuming that the ball is still alive, he waves both arms across each
other in front of his abdomen.
< One Short
One short is signalled by touching the tip of one hand
to the same shoulder.
<
=============================
<
TIME FOR A WORD FROM OUR SPONSOR
<
This migraine headache is being brought to you by:
<
https://groups.google.com/forum/#!topic/alt.conspiracy/3ABi_O1WXLE
<
http://www.edconrad.com
<
"We can forgive a child
who is afraid of the dark.
The real tragedy of life
is when men are afraid
of the light." -- Plato
<
"THERE SHE BLOWS!
http://www.edconrad.com/pics/SaveTheWhale.jpg
<
==============================
<
< BACK TO THE SIMPLICITIES OF CRICKET
<
TV Replay
If an umpire wishes the third umpire to make a decision
based on a TV replay, he signals by drawing a large square
shape in the air with both hands, spreading them out high
in the air in front of him, bringing them down, and then
together again.
< The Two Forms of Cricket
Cricket is played in two very distinct forms. The first
is limited duration, in which a specific number of hours
of playing time are allocated and each team plays two innings.
<
The second is limited overs, in which each team plays one
innings of a pre-determined number of overs.
<
The only restriction on field placements is that, at the
time the ball is delivered, there must be no more than two
fielders in the quadrant of the field backward of square
leg. (This rule exists mainly for historical reasons -
see the Bodyline section below.)
<
Sometimes fielders close to the bat wear helmets for safety. When not
in use, the helmet (or any other loose equipment) may be placed on the
field (usually behind the wicket-keeper, where it is unlikely to be
hit by the ball). If any such loose fielding equipment is hit with the
ball, five runs are scored, either to the batsman who hit the ball or
as the appropriate form of byes. The ball is then considered dead and
no further runs can be taken, nor can a batsman be run out.
<
If a fielder is wearing a protective helmet, and the striker hits the
ball so that it bounces off the helmet, he may not be out caught off
the rebound. If a ball rebounds from any other part of the body of a
fielder, he may be out caught if another fielder (or the same one)
then catches the ball before it hits the ground.
<
< INJURIES AND SUBSTITUTIONS
<
In case of injury, substitutes may replace any number of fielders. A
substitute may only field - he may not bowl, nor bat. A substitute may
not keep wicket. A substituted player must return to the field as soon
as he is able to resume playing without danger.
<
If a batsman is injured, he may retire and resume his innings when fit
again, so long as his team's innings is not over. If a batsman is too
injured to bat when no other batsmen remain to come in after a wicket
falls, his innings must be forfeited and his team's innings ends. If a
batsman is able to bat, but not run, then another player may run for
him. The runner must wear the same equipment as the batter, and
performs all his running. The injured non-runner must remain behind
his crease at all times when the ball is in play or risk being run
out, even if his runner is safely behind a crease.
<
If a bowler is injured during an over and cannot complete it, another
bowler must bowl the remaining deliveries in that over. The bowler
chosen to finish the over must not be the bowler who bowled the
previous over, and must not bowl the over immediately following
either.
<
A player may not leave the field for injury unless the injury is
sustained on the field. An injured player who takes the field may not
leave because of his pre-existing injury, unless it is clearly
aggravated further on the field.
<
ADVERSE WEATHER CONDITIONS
<
Play is suspended at the umpires' discretion for rain. Light rain is
usually tolerated, though nothing heavier, because of the possibility
of damage to the pitch.
<
If the players are off the field, they must remain off until the rain
has stopped completely. During rain the pitch is covered with
waterproof material to protect it. Often the bowlers' run-ups and an
area around the pitch are also covered.
<
During very windy conditions, sometimes the bails will tend to blow
off the top of the stumps. If this becomes a problem, the umpires can
decide to play without bails. In this case, the wicket does not need
to be broken by uprooting a stump, and the umpires must take full
responsibility for deciding, in a reasonable manner, whether the
wicket is broken or not.
<
=============================
<
TIME FOR ANOTHER WORD FROM OUR SPONSOR
<
This migraine headache is being brought to you by:
<
http://www.edconrad.org
<
"We can forgive a child
who is afraid of the dark.
The real tragedy of life
is when men are afraid
of the light." -- Plato
<
==============================
<
FIRST CLASS CRICKET
<
First class cricket matches are the most prestigious games, played at
a professional level. The top level games are international Test
matches, played between countries. There are also domestic first class
cricket competitions. First class matches are of limited duration.
Test matches will be described first, then any differences for other
first class matches will be described.
<
Test matches are played over five days, with six hours of play each
day. Each day's play is divided into three sessions of two hours each,
with a 40 minute break between the first two session for lunch, and a
20 minute tea break between the last two sessions. A short drinks
break is taken once an hour, or more often in very hot weather. Play
usually goes from 11:00 local time to 18:00, although this may be
varied if sunset occurs early. The scheduled close of play time is
called stumps. Test matches are never played under artificial
lighting.
<
Each team has two innings, usually played in alternating order. Each
innings is over when either ten batsmen are out, or the captain of the
batting side declares the innings closed (for strategic reasons, more
later). When all the innings are completed, the team with the most
runs wins. If there is a tie, the result stands (this is rare - it has
only ever happened twice).
<
If by the end of the final day's play all the innings are not
completed, the game is a draw, no matter who appeared to be "winning".
Thus the strategic importance of sometimes declaring an innings
closed, in order to have enough time to dismiss the other team and so
win the game.
<
The order of the innings alternates except when the follow-on is
enforced. This can occur if the second team to bat in the first
innings scores 200 or more runs fewer than the first team. The captain
of the first team may then ask the second team to follow on: to bat
its second innings immediately, and defer his own team's second
innings until afterwards.
<
Whenever a change of innings occurs during a session, a ten minute
break is taken. If the end of an innings occurs within ten minutes of
the end of the first or second sessions, the ten minute break is lost
and the scheduled interval is shifted to begin immediately. If the end
of an innings occurs within ten minutes of stumps, the day's play ends
early.
<
Test matches are played with a red cricket ball. A new ball is used
for the beginning of each innings. The same ball must be used
throughout the innings, being replaced only in the following cases:
<
The captain of the bowling team may elect to take a new ball at any
time after 80 overs have been bowled with the previous ball.
If the ball is lost, it is replaced.
If the ball is damaged, either by the stitching coming undone or the
ball becoming clearly non-spherical, it is replaced.
In cases 2 and 3, the ball must be replaced by a previously used ball
of similarly worn condition to the old ball, as chosen by the umpires.
If the ball is ever hit so that a spectator gathers it, the spectator
must return it so that play can continue.
<
On each day of play in a Test match, a minimum of 90 overs must be
bowled. If the bowling team has not bowled the required minimum by the
scheduled stumps time, play is extended until the required number of
overs have been bowled. Whenever an innings ends, the number of overs
to be bowled is recalculated, disregarding the number of overs bowled
so far during the same day. The required minimum is calculated to be
the number of minutes of play remaining, divided by 4 and rounded up.
On the last day of play, this formula is used up until one hour before
stumps, then fifteen overs are added to the result. If extra overs are
bowled before the time one hour before stumps on the final day, then
there still must be a minimum of fifteen overs bowled after the time
one hour before stumps. All of these conditions are recalculated for
time lost due to poor weather, at a rate of one over per 4 minutes of
lost time. If a day's play ends early because of poor weather
conditions, all calculations are reset for the next day.
<
If there is heavy cloud cover, the umpires may decide that the ambient
light level is too low and that the batsmen may be in danger because
of difficulty in sighting the ball. If so, they offer the light to the
batsmen, who may agree to leave the field or may decide to play on. If
the light deteriorates further, the umpires will offer again. If the
batsmen decide to leave the field and the light improves, the umpires
make the decision to resume play.
<
If a fielder leave the field for any reason and then returns during
the same innings, he may not bowl until he has been on the field again
for as much time as he spent off the field.

Test matches are played in Series between two of the official Test
nations. A Test Series consists of a set number of matches, from one
to six, all of which are played to completion, even if one team gains
an unassailable lead in the Series. Series of three or five matches
are most common. Some pairs of nations compete against one another for
a perpetual trophy. If a Series between two such nations is drawn, the
holder of the trophy retains it.
<
Non-Test first class cricket differs from Test cricket in only a few
respects. A non-Test first class match is usually three or four days
long, not five. In a four-day game, the cut-off figure for enforcing
the follow-on is 150 or more runs behind the first team. The formula
used to determine the minimum number of overs bowled in a non-Test
first class match may be different to that used for a Test match;
there is no standard regulation.
<
Non-Test first class competitions are usually round-robins amongst
several domestic teams. Other first class matches include single games
between visiting international sides and domestic first class teams.
<
ONE-DAY CRICKET
<
One-day cricket differs significantly from first class cricket. A one-
day match is played on a single day. Either a red or a white cricket
ball may be used, and play under artificial lighting is common.
<
Each team gets only one innings, and that innings is restricted to a
maximum number of overs. Usual choices for the number of overs are 50,
55, or 60. Recently, an abbreviated form of the games has been
developed called Twenty20, with a maximum of 20 overs per innings.
Each innings is complete at the end of the stipulated number of overs,
no matter how many batsmen are out. If ten batsmen are out before the
full number of overs are bowled, the innings is also over. If the
first team's innings ends in this manner, the second team still has
its full number of overs to score the required runs. The timing of the
innings and the break between them are not regulated.
<
Whichever team scores the most runs wins. A tied score stands. There
is no draw result. If the match is washed out, so that the innings are
not played, the game is declared a no-result.
<
In each innings, each bowler is restricted to bowling a maximum number
of overs equal to one fifth of the total number of overs in the
innings. Either a single new ball is used for each innings, or two new
balls which are alternated between overs. (This is often done with
white balls because they wear much faster than red balls.) New balls
are never taken during an innings, but replacements for lost or
damaged balls are taken as in first class matches.
<<
In case of rain interruption to the first innings, the number of overs
for each innings is recalculated so that they will be the same. If
rain interrupts the second innings, making it impossible for an equal
number of overs to be bowled, the number of runs scored by the first
team is adjusted to compensate. The standard adjustment formula now
used is the "Duckworth-Lewis method", which is arcane even for cricket
aficionados and too complicated to describe here. There is also a
predetermined number of overs that must be bowled in each innings for
any result to be considered valid; if this limit is not reached the
game is a no-result.
<
Because of the emphasis on scoring runs quickly, wide balls and high
balls (called as no ball) are enforced much more strictly in one-day
cricket.
<
One-day competitions are played either as Series between pairs of
international teams, round-robin competitions among groups of
international teams, or round-robins among domestic teams. A World Cup
one-day competition is played between all the Test nations every four
years.
<
STRATEGIES, TACTICS AND TRIVIA
<
All of the rules of cricket have been described above, as well as some
other information which is not "rules", such as names of fielding
positions. The rest of this file concerns other information that is
useful to know, but not actually "rules".
<
BOWLING STYLES
<
There are two basic approaches to bowling: fast and spin. A fast
bowler bowls the ball as fast as practicable, attempting to defeat the
batsman with its pace. If the ball also swings in the air, or seams
(moves sideways) off the pitch because of bouncing on the seam, it can
be very difficult to play. A spin bowler has a more ambling run-up and
uses wrist or finger motion to impart a spin to the ball. The ball
then spins to one side when it bounces on the pitch, thus also
hopefully causing it to be hard to hit. Fast bowlers are generally
used with a new ball, while spin bowlers get more spin with a worn
ball. There is also medium pace bowling, which concentrates more on
swing and seam than pace.
<
A swing bowler will hold the seam of the ball at a certain angle and
attempt to release the ball so that it spins with the seam at a
constant angle. With one side of the ball polished and the other
rough, differential air pressure will cause it to swing in the air.
<
A seam bowler attempts to keep the seam vertical, so that the ball
hits the seam when it bounces on the pitch and deflects in its path
either to the right or left.
<
A fast bowler can also pull his fingers down one side of the ball as
he lets it go, imparting a small amount of sideways spin to the ball.
This can cause the ball to move sideways off the pitch. Such a
delivery is called a leg-cutter if the ball moves from the leg side to
the off side of a right-handed batsman, or an off-cutter if moves from
the off to the leg. A specialist spin bowler can get a lot more spin
that a fast bowler bowling cutters, however.
<
There are two types of spin bowling: off-spin, and leg-spin. Imagine
holding a ball in your right hand and, for simplicity's sake, throwing
it. If you twist your hand in a clockwise direction on release, then
the spin on the ball will be such that when it bounces it will spin to
your right. This is essentially off-spin bowling (so called because,
to a right-handed batsman, the ball spins from the off side to the leg
side). The off-spin delivery itself is called either an off-spinner or
an off-break. An off-spin bowler will sometimes not spin the ball so
much, putting more pace on the delivery. Such a delivery is called an
arm-ball.
<
Now imagine twisting the ball anticlockwise and releasing it from the
palm so that it 'rolls' over the base of the little finger. This gives
the ball spin in the opposite direction, so it spins left when it
bounces. This is basic leg-spin (because to a right-handed batsman it
spins from leg to off). The basic leg-spin delivery is called a leg-
spinner or leg-break.
<
The interesting thing about leg-spin is that if you cock your wrist at
various angles you can in fact, with the same basic bowling action,
produce spin in different directions. With the wrist cocked a little
towards the inside of the arm, you can produce top-spinners. Go
further and you actually end up producing spin in the same direction
as an off-spinner. A ball bowled in this way by a leg-spin bowler is
called a wrong 'un, or sometimes a googly . Probably trickiest of all
is a ball bowled with the hand in the same position as a top-spinner,
but released from under the hand, thereby gaining back-spin. This ball
is called a flipper.
<
(A flipper is actually bowled from the back of the hand like a normal
leg-spinner, but with the forearm twisted outwards, so the ball spins
about a vertical axis. I'm not sure which of these is correct.)
<
IU also have kindly supplied a graphic which attempts to show the arm
and wrist action of the different leg-spin deliveries. Sorry for those
with only ASCII browsers, but this is too difficult to show in ASCII!
<
For those of you with graphical browsers, the following diagram shows
a view of a (right-handed) leg-spinner's arm, from in front (i.e.,
batsman's point of view). The rotation of the ball out of the hand is
the same in each case, with the ball spinning with the seam as an
"equator".
<
http://www.cs.purdue.edu/homes/hosking/cricket/legspin.gif
<
So right handed spinners fall into two classes: off-spinners, with
their simple off-spin and arm-ball deliveries; and leg-spinners, with
their leg-spinners, top-spinners, wrong 'uns, and flippers. Leg-
spinners are naturally much more difficult to bat against, because of
the great variety of balls they can produce, but they are actually
rarer than off-spinners because it is so much more difficult to bowl
reasonably accurately with the leg-spin hand action.
<
For left-handed spin bowlers there is a whole different system of
nomenclature!
<
A left-handed bowler who uses the same action as an off-spinner is
called an orthodox spinner. Such bowlers are not uncommon. A left-
hander who bowls with the same action as a leg-spinner is called an
unorthodox spinner - and these are the rarest bowlers in cricket. The
left-handed analogue of the leg-spin delivery (which spins the
opposite way, of course) is called an unorthodox spinner. The top-
spinner and flipper retain their names. And the left-handed analogue
of the wrong 'un is called a Chinaman .
<
Typical bowling speeds are:
<
<
Fast bowler:
130-140 km/h (80-90 mph)
Medium pace bowler:
100-130 km/h (60-80 mph)
Spin bowler:
70-90 km/h (45-55 mph)
Bowlers also make use of the state of the pitch, which is quite
crucial to the game, and is one of the things the commentators look at
in great detail before the game begins. Because it's a natural
surface, there are usually small inconsistencies in its flatness,
hardness and elasticity. Over a multi-day game, or even over a single
day, these become more pronounced, so it often gets more difficult to
bat as the game progresses. Spin bowlers in particular often find that
they get much more spin from an old pitch than a freshly prepared
one.
<
Some of the different types of balls bowled have special names:
<
Bouncer:
A ball bounced short so that it bounces high, usually chest height or
higher as it passes the batsman.
Yorker:
A ball bounced very close to the batsman's crease. This is difficult
to score from and often gets batsmen out, but is difficult to bowl
without accidentally bowling a full toss.
Batsman's Shots
The different types of shots a batsman can play are described by
names:
<
Block:
A defensive shot played with the bat vertical and angled down at the
front, intended to stop the ball and drop it down quickly on to the
pitch in front of the batsman.

Drive:
An offensive shot played with the bat sweeping down through the
vertical. The ball travels swiftly along the ground in front of the
striker. A drive can be an on drive, straight drive, off drive, or
cover drive, depending in which direction it goes.

Cut:
A shot played with the bat close to horizontal, which hits the ball
somewhere in the arc between cover and gully.
<
Edge, or Glance:
A shot played off the bat at a glancing angle, through the slips
area.
<
Leg Glance:
A shot played at a glancing angle behind the legs, so that it goes in
the direction of fine leg.

Pull:
A horizontal bat shot which pulls the ball around the batsman into the
square leg area.

Sweep:
Like a pull shot, except played with the backmost knee on the ground,
so as to hit balls which bounce low.

Hook:
Like a pull shot, but played to a bouncer and intended to hit the ball
high in the air over square leg - hopefully for six runs.

French Cut:
An attempt at a cut shot which hits the bottom edge of the bat and
goes into the area behind square leg.

Reverse Sweep:
A sweep with the bat reversed, into the point area.
Most of these shots can also be lofted, in an attempt to hit the ball
over the close fielders (or the boundary). The batting strokes can be
divided into two categories: Straight bat and cross bat. The straight
bat shots are played with the bat held close to the vertical, and are
the blocks, drives and glances. Cross bat shots are played with the
bat held more horizontally, like a baseball bat. These include cuts,
pulls, sweeps and hooks.

The following terms are used more informally and are not standard:

Hoik:
A wild swing intended only to hit the ball as hard and as far as
possible, usually with little or no control.
Agricultural Shot:
Any shot played with very little skill.
More Weird Names
If a bowler completes an over without any runs being scored from it,
it is termed a maiden.

If a batsman gets out without scoring any runs, he is said to be out
for a duck . The origin of this term is unclear, but commonly rumoured
to be because the '0' next to his name on the scorecard resembles a
duck egg. A batsman out for a duck while facing his first delivery of
the innings is out for a golden duck.

The runs scored while two batsmen bat together are called their
partnership. There are ten partnerships per completed innings,
labelled from first-wicket partnership to tenth-wicket partnership, in
order.

A nightwatchman is a batsman who comes in to bat out of order towards
the end of a day's play in a multi-day game, in order to 'protect'
better batsmen. To elucidate, the batting order in an innings is
usually arranged with two specialists openers who begin the innings,
then the rest of the batsmen in order of skill, best to worst. The job
of the openers is to bat for a while against the new ball. A brand new
ball is very hard and bouncy, and fast bowlers can use this to great
advantage and can often get batsmen out. So it is harder to bat
against a new ball. It is also somewhat difficult to begin batting. A
new batsman is more likely to get out than one who has been on the
field and scoring runs for a while.

Now, in a multi-day game, it sometimes happens that a team's innings
will have only a few men out towards the end of the day's play. If a
batsman gets out with about half an hour or less until stumps, the
batting captain will sometimes send in a poor batsman next instead of
a good one. The idea is that the poor batsman (the nightwatchman) will
last 20 minutes and so protect the good batsman from having to make a
fresh start that evening and again the next morning. It is essentially
a sacrifice ploy. Of course, it can backfire dangerously if the
nightwatchman does get out before stumps. The nightwatchman is a
tactic that is used about 50% of the time when the appropriate
situation arises (which itself occurs perhaps once every 4 or 5
games). It just depends on how the captain feels at the time.

A sightscreen is a large screen positioned on the boundary so that it
forms a backdrop behind the bowler, so that the striker can see the
ball clearly. Sightscreens are white when a red ball is used, and
black for a white ball.

A rabbit is a player (almost invariably a bowler, but sometimes a
wicket-keeper) who is a very poor batsman. A ferret is an extremely
poor batsman (so called because he "goes in after the rabbits").

Statistics and Good Performances
The following statistics are recorded:

Batsmen:
number of runs scored, time spent batting, number of balls faced, how
out (and by which bowler and catcher if appropriate).
Bowlers:
number of overs bowled, number of maidens bowled, number of wickets
taken, number of runs conceded (i.e., scored off his bowling).
Team:
extras, total runs, wickets fallen, overs bowled, total at each fall
of wicket.
A single innings scorecard might look like this:

Australia - 1st Innings
M. Taylor c Richardson b Snell 12
M. Slater lbw Donald 57
D. Boon b de Villiers 68
M. Waugh not out 184
A. Border c Rhodes b Donald 0
S. Waugh c Snell b de Villiers 34
I. Healy c Snell b de Villiers 6
S. Warne run out 35
M. Hughes st Richardson b Cronje 10
C. McDermott b de Villiers 41
G. McGrath lbw de Villiers 9
Extras 16
Total 141 overs 10 for 472

Bowling - South Africa
O M R W
A. Donald 40 5 106 2
F. de Villiers 37 7 85 5
R. Snell 32 3 126 1
C. Simons 15 0 82 0
H. Cronje 17 2 73 1
FOW: 25, 99, 164, 164, 225, 238, 315, 345, 446, 472

The abbreviations are:
b bowled by
c caught by
st stumped by
O overs
M maidens
R runs
W wickets
FOW fall of wicket

The team score is usually given as "(number of wickets) for (number of
runs)" in Australia. In England, New Zealand, and some other countries
it is given as "(number of runs) for (number of wickets)". Bowling
figures are sometimes printed in shortened form, for example: Donald
40-5-106-2, de Villiers 37-7-85-5, etc.

The partnership scores can be seen from the differences between
successive fall of wicket scores.

Good performances are considered to be:

A batsman scoring 50, or 100, or multiples thereof.
A partnership adding 50, or 100, or multiples thereof.
A bowler taking five wickets in a single innings.
A bowler taking ten wickets in a two innings match. (This is an
excellent performance and a relatively rare feat.)
A bowler taking a hat trick, i.e., three wickets in three successive
balls (perhaps in different overs). This is even more rare.
Each of these tasks is usually greeted with enthusiastic applause from
the spectators. The crowd also usually applauds significant events
such as: any wicket falling, a six, a four, a good over from a bowler
(one that the batsmen have great difficulty playing safely), a good
athletic effort from a fielder to gather the ball, the innings total
reaching a multiple of 50.

The number of runs scored in an innings average about 3 per over for a
first class match, and 4 per over in a one-day match. The variation in
these numbers can be quite large, differences of up to one run per
over being not uncommon. In a first class match, a captain makes his
decision on declaring the innings closed based on the remaining time
in the match and the size of his team's lead. He will try to allow as
much time as possible to bowl the opposition out, while ensuring they
do not have enough time to score enough runs to win.

Over a single player's career, the two most important statistics are:

Batting Average:
The aggregate number of runs scored divided by the number of times the
batsman has been out. The higher, the better.
Bowling Average:
The aggregate runs scored against a bowler divided by the number of
wickets taken. The lower, the better.
Each of these averages is kept separately for Test cricket, first
class cricket in general, and one-day cricket. A batting average above
30 is very good, 40 excellent, and 50 is legendary. Mention must be
made of the Australian batsman Sir Donald Bradman, whose career
average was a record 99.94, far and away the greatest batsman ever to
play the game. A bowling average below 25 is considered excellent.

Teams That Play Cricket
The official Test Cricket nations are currently: England, Australia,
West Indies, South Africa, India, Pakistan, New Zealand, Sri Lanka,
Zimbabwe, and Bangladesh.

The West Indies is actually a consortium of Caribbean countries:
Barbados; Jamaica; Guyana; The Republic of Trinidad and Tobago;
Antigua and Barbuda; St. Kitt's-Nevis; Dominica; St. Lucia; St.
Vincent and the Grenadines; Montserrat; and Grenada, Carriacou and
Petite Martinique.

Minor cricketing nations (which do not play Test cricket, but do
compete for a place in the World Cup One-Day competition) include:
Ireland, Kenya, Fiji, Canada, The Netherlands, USA.

The most famous Test cricket Series is The Ashes, played every two
years between Australia and England. The Ashes trophy is a small urn
containing "the ashes of English cricket" (in reality the ashes of a
set of bails), which "died" in a match in 1882 when Australia beat
England for the first time. The Ashes are currently held by Australia,
although the physical trophy is kept permanently in a room at Lord's
Cricket Ground in London.

The most infamous event in cricket was the 1932-33 English tour of
Australia - the Bodyline tour. The English team used a new tactic to
get batsmen out, by bowling at their bodies and placing many fielders
in short fielding positions backward of square leg. As the batsmen
fended the ball away in an effort to protect themselves, the ball
often flew off the edge of the bat into the waiting hands of the
fielders, getting the batsman out caught. The English referred to this
tactic as "Leg Theory", but the Australians, angry that the English
bowlers were aiming at their bodies, christened it "Bodyline".

Several Australian batsmen were injured because of this, some
seriously. The English tactics cause a diplomatic row between the
countries. After the tour was over, cricket officials introduced the
rules against dangerous bowling, and the restriction of no more than
two fielders backward of square leg.
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