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T20 Cricket is a shortened format of the 50 over game. T20 as it is normally referred to is the shortened form of TWENTY20 Cricket, started in 2003 by ECB (England and Wales Cricket Board) for their inter county professional competition. All the rules of standard cricket apply.

Each team has an innings that consists of twenty overs, with the total duration of the game lasting about three hours. This shortened form of limited overs cricket has found a huge following internationally. All the cricketing countries when having international tours now include at least one T20 game in their itinerary, and all test playing nations have a domestic league. The largest and richest competition of this format takes place annually in India, known as the IPL Competition ( Indian Premier League), the majority of players are from India, with 3 to 4 international stars being ‘auctioned’ to the various franchisers who form the IPL.

The first World Cup tournament took place in South Africa in 2007 and is contested every two years.

A standard game consists of twenty overs per innings with some provisos;

  • A bowler may only bowl a maximum of 4 overs in an innings. If he bowls a ‘no ball’ by over stepping  the popping crease he gives a run to the batting side and a ‘free hit’ is declared for his next delivery which means the batsman cannot go out bowled or caught, but can be run out. Balls bowled down the leg side, even marginally are wided giving the batting side an extra run.
  • At no time can there be more than five fielders on the leg side.
  • During the ‘Power Play’, the first six overs of each innings, no more than two fielders may be further than 30 metres from the wicket.After the power play this number can increase to a maximum of five.
  • The Bowling team must start their final over within 75 minutes of the start of an innings otherwise they are penalised, giving six runs to the batting side for each over not bowled.
  • If at the end of twenty overs the scores are tied the game goes to a super over, in which each team can choose 3 batsmen to score the maximum amount of runs in one over. If the scores are still tied the winning team will be decided on the amount of boundaries hit in their innings.
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