In the sport of cricket
Cricket is a bat-and-ball game played between two teams of 11 players on an oval-shaped field, at the centre of which is a rectangular 22-yard long pitch. One team bats, trying to score as many runs as possible while the other team bowls and fields, trying to dismiss the batsmen and thus limit the...
, different fielding restrictions
are imposed depending on the type of match. They are used to discourage certain bowling tactics, or to encourage the batsmen to play big shots, enabling them to hit 4s and 6s. Each team has nine fielders other than the wicket-keeper and bowler. The captain decides the fielding positions usually after consulting with the bowler. In Test cricket
Test cricket is the longest form of the sport of cricket. Test matches are played between national representative teams with "Test status", as determined by the International Cricket Council , with four innings played between two teams of 11 players over a period of up to a maximum five days...
matches, the fielding restrictions are relaxed as compared to a One Day International.
In all forms of cricket, only two fielders are allowed in the quadrant between the fielding positions of square leg
and long stop
. This is to prevent the outlawed and controversial bodyline
Bodyline, also known as fast leg theory bowling, was a cricketing tactic devised by the English cricket team for their 1932–33 Ashes tour of Australia, specifically to combat the extraordinary batting skill of Australia's Don Bradman...
tactics from being used.
One day cricket only
Various rules concerning have applied during the history of one day cricket, with the aim of encouraging the batsman to play shots and make the game faster and more exciting. The current rules applying to One Day Internationals were first introduced as trial rules in July 2005, and are also used for some other limited overs tournaments.
A circle of radius 30 yards (27 m) measured from the centre of the pitch divides the infield from the outfield. A 15 yard circle (13.7 m) radius drawn from where the batsman stands encompasses an area known as the close infield.
During the first 10 overs of a 50 over innings a maximum of two fielders are allowed to be deployed in the outfield. A minimum of 2 fielders (other than the bowler and wicket-keeper
The wicket-keeper in the sport of cricket is the player on the fielding side who stands behind the wicket or stumps being guarded by the batsman currently on strike...
) have to be deployed in the close infield. If the number of overs in the innings is restricted to less than 24, the length of the fielding restrictions is reduced to 8 or 9 overs.
The restriction of having a maximum of three fielders in the outfield is applied for a further two blocks of 5 overs, with the captains of the fielding and the batting sides deciding the timing of one block each. These 5 over spells are called Powerplay
A Powerplay is a rule introduced in 1991 concerning fielding restrictions in One Day International cricket.The Powerplay was intended to add to the excitement in ODI cricket. In a Powerplay fielding restrictions are applied on the fielding team, only 2 or 3 players are allowed outside the 30 yard...
2 and Powerplay 3 and may be shortened if the length of the innings is restricted. (Powerplay 1 is the first block of 10). Powerplays were first encountered in the One Day International between England
England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Scotland to the north and Wales to the west; the Irish Sea is to the north west, the Celtic Sea to the south west, with the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south separating it from continental...
Australia , officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area...
on 7 July 2005.
For the rest of the innings, a more generous maximum of five fielders in the outfield applies.
The number of players in the outfield area is the same as for the One-day format. But the restriction lasts for the first six of the twenty overs, and there is no "Batting" or "Bowling" (Powerplays 2 and 3 in ODI's) Powerplay.