What are the basic principles behind your tactics on the cricket field?
How do you turn those principles into real life field placings, bowling changes and wins?
Each game may be different, but one thing always remains the same: You must always be trying to win, even at the risk of losing.
But that idea, no matter how sound, is not enough in itself. Here are the practical principles that lie underneath:
Controlling the game: Fielding 2nd
- Fielding 2nd means you have batted first and (hopefully) declared on a target that your opponents think they can get.
- You need 10 wickets, so you must attack as much and as long as you can: This plenty of close catchers, accurate bowling and no defensive positions.
- Depending on how well this goes you may look to mix things up (if you dont get wickets), defend if you are really getting smashed or even get them back in the game so they keep attacking.
- Keeping the opposition up with the run rate while taking wickets is more important than taking wickets quickly. This is because most sides are almost impossible to bowl out when set on blocking out.
- Always know the match situation and be ready to change to defence or attack quickly (especially when a wicket falls).
- Start with seamers, end with spinners. Dont fall in the trap of trying to knock over the tail with seamers unless you know they are good enough to break through a stanch defence.
- Make sure you try all your bowlers, you never know who will take the key wickets until you try.
- Think ahead: Plan when you will use certain bowlers, keep an eye on how confident the batsmen are. Don't let bowlers go on too long.
- The ideal situation would be for the opposition to need around 80 runs in the last 20 overs with 4 wickets in hand. They will think they can get this target, but you will be in the best position to win.
An exception to these principles would be if you are bowled out for a below par score. In this case look at your bowling attack. If you can bowl them out simply let your best bowlers do the job. If your bowling is weak you will be forced to play more defensively at first and change depending on the situation.
Controlling the game: Fielding 1st
- Fielding first is a bit simpler and usually more defensive.
- Your aim is to take 10 wickets as quickly as possible. Here you have no fear of your opposition blocking out so you dont have to worry about keeping them in the game. In short: A small total in a short time.
- You can begin by attacking, although perhaps not as hard as if you were fielding 2nd. The more wickets you take, the harder you attack.
- If you are not getting wickets, keep 2-3 close catchers but defend by cutting of scoring areas.
- If you cannot bowl them out and they are going to declare, give up on wickets and go all out defence, aiming to tie them down.
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