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Your go-to cricket slang dictionary for Ashes, Big Bash and the summer of cricket

15 Dec 2017

Whether you’re watching the professionals during the Ashes or Big Bash or playing peace-keeper at the family’s backyard or beach test series, we’ve got you covered for all your cricket vocab.

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So your cricket terminology isn’t too hot… don’t worry, your secret is safe with us. Better yet, we’ve piled together a few cricket slang words, phrases and rules to help you understand the game so you’ve got it going on for The Ashes, Big Bash and the summer of cricket.

A few general terms:

  • Follow-on: there are two innings per team in four to five-day cricket. If the first team scores well and the second team doesn’t, the first team can nominate the follow-on rule. This means the second team has to bat first for the second innings, which allows the first team to know the exact number of runs needed to win when they bat again.
  • Maiden: an over where no runs are scored off the bowling.
  • Sledging: banter between the batsman and fielders. This is very common in the classic games of backyard or beach cricket, which are great to play at any of our holiday camping and caravanning parks.

Bowling

  • Overs: bowlers bowl in batches of six from each end of the pitch. Each batch is called an over.
  • Clean Bowled: the ball gets past the batsman and knocks the wicket, which shall be followed by an exaggerated celebration by the bowler and fielders.
  • Googly: a particular type of bowling technique that spins the ball in the opposite direction it bounced. By taping your tennis ball you might be able to swerve this move in the backyard or the beach.
  • Hat Trick: when the bowler gets three wickets with three consecutive deliveries.
  • Jaffa: an unplayable delivery that sharply deviates from the line. WAGs are often known for this.
  • Seam Bowler: a bowler who bounces the seam of the ball on the ground to create an unexpected direction.
  • Yorker: a delivery aimed at the batsman’s feet that can be hard to hit. If you do this in backyard or beach cricket too often, you’ll most likely be nominated to field.

Batting

  • Top Order: the best batsman, who normally bats first. Dad is known for taking this claim in the games at home.
  • All Out: after ten wickets have fallen, every player is out from the batting team (the eleventh player has no one to swap ends with).
  • Century: the batter has reached 100 runs without getting out. If this happens at your home game, it’s probably time to introduce that maximum score rule from our backyard cricket guide.
  • Duck: a player who gets out without scoring any runs. To avoid tantrums and sulking, implement the ‘no-outs on the first ball’ rule.
  • Pair: in a game of two innings, where a player is unlucky enough to get two Ducks.
  • Rabbit: a bad batsman.
  • Tippy-go: used in backyard cricket. Every time the batsman hits the ball, they must run no matter the risk of getting out.


This Ashes season, you’ll know how to call out the googlies, the jaffas and the yorkers. Next thing you know you’ll be umpiring the family’s game of backyard or beach cricket.

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