Laws in T20 Cricket
Twenty20 match format is a form of limited overs cricket in that it involves two teams, each with a single innings, the key feature being that each team bats for a maximum of 20 overs. In terms of visual format, the batting team members do not arrive from and depart to traditional dressing rooms, but come and go from a “bench” (typically a row of chairs) visible in the playing arena, analogous to association football’s “technical area” or a baseball “dugout”.
The Laws of cricket apply to Twenty20, with some exceptions:
- Each bowler may bowl a maximum of only one-fifth of the total overs per innings. For a full, uninterrupted match, this is 4 overs.
- If a bowler delivers a no ball by overstepping the popping crease, it costs 1 run and his next delivery is designated a “free-hit”. In this circumstance the batsman can only be dismissed through a run out, hitting the ball twice, obstructing the field or handling the ball.
- The following fielding restrictions apply:
- No more than five fielders can be on the leg side at any time.
- During the first six overs, a maximum of two fielders can be outside the 30-yard circle (this is known as the powerplay).
- After the first six overs, a maximum of five fielders can be outside the fielding circle.
- If the fielding team does not start to bowl their 20th over within 75 minutes, the batting side is credited an extra six runs for every whole over bowled after the 75-minute mark; the umpire may add more time to this if he believes the batting team is wasting time.
Currently, if the match ends with the scores tied and there must be a winner. The tie is broken with a one over per side “Eliminator” or “Super Over”: Each team nominates three batsmen and one bowler to play a one-over per side “mini-match”. The team which bats second in the match bats first in the Super Over. In turn, each side bats one over bowled by the one nominated opposition bowler, with their innings over if they lose two wickets before the over is completed. The side with the higher score from their Super Over wins. If the super over also ends up in a tie, the team that has scored the most boundaries (4s+6s) in the 20 overs wins.
In the Australian domestic competition the Big Bash League the Super Over is played slightly differently, with no 2-wicket limit, and if the super over is also tied then a “countback” is used, with scores after the fifth ball for each team being used to determine the result. If it is still tied, then the countback goes to 4 balls and so on. The latest Super Over to decide a match was between the Melbourne Stars winning against the Sydney Sixers on the 5th January 2015, in the Big Bash League at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. With the Stars winning 19/0 to 9/2 in the Super Over after tying on 150.