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Formats Of Twenty20 (T20) Cricket-History & Rules Explained!


One of the newest formats of the game of cricket, Twenty20 (T20), has captured the minds and hearts of sports lovers around the world. Before the concept of T20 came into being, many cricket buffs would lament that, even though they loved watching cricket, it wasn’t as fast as other sports, like football.

That being the reason, the younger generation of sports lovers were shying away from watching cricket. That’s when the administrators thought of creating a new format, which had the thrill of other sports and which didn’t require people to spend hours and hours to watch a match. As a result, T20 cricket was born.

Simply put, a T20 match is a 20-over match between two sides, with most rules similar to a one-day-international (ODI) match. However, since all the action is packed in 40 hours (20 overs for each side), there’s so much more thrill in the T20 format than in any other format of cricket.

Punters also enjoy betting on T20 matches because there’s a new twist in the game with every next ball. So, in this blog, Fun88 will briefly explain what is T20 cricket all about, T20 cricket rules, and its history.

Read Related: T20 World Cup: All Team Players List – Key Players to Place Your Bet On

Key pointers from T20 cricket history

Twenty20 International (T20I) is a form of cricket, played between two of the international members of the International Cricket Council (ICC)

Like we mentioned, T20 was born when the administrators were trying to find new ways to attract spectators in large numbers. The T20 format was officially introduced by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) in a country cricket match.

It was on June 13, 2003, that the first T20 games were played between English counties. Since the beginning of the format, it started attracting large crowds to stadiums, which resulted in its widespread popularity.

Soon after this, regional teams within countries started playing each other in T20 matches. Such matches were happening in many countries, where cricket was popular, like Pakistan, West Indies, and Australia. That shows that both administrators and spectators were desperately seeking a new format of the game.

For example, in Pakistan, 13 teams from various parts of the country participated in the inaugural T20 competition in 2004, with Faisalabad Wolves emerging as the champions.

Interestingly, the first T20 international match was between the women’s teams of England and New Zealand on August 5, 2004. Although the T20 format was becoming popular, it got a real boost when the ICC organized a T20 World Cup for the first time in 2007, which India won.

After the successful completion of the ICC T20 World Cup in 2007, several T20 leagues were born in many countries. In India, the BCCI started the Indian Premier League (IPL) in 2008. Subsequently, leagues like Bangladesh Premier League, Big Bash League (in Australia), Pakistan Super League, Caribbean Premier League, and Afghan Premier League were started.

T20 cricket match’s format and rules

A T20 match is a limited-overs match in which two teams compete, and they are given a maximum of 20 overs each to bat. The team batting first sets a total of runs by playing the 20-over quota. The team batting second has to chase that total to win the match.

A T20 match lasts approximately three hours; therefore, it’s much shorter than an ODI and a test match. As it takes only 3 hours to watch the match (matches are mostly scheduled in the evening), even busy sports lovers can watch the game. They may even go to a stadium to watch a match if it’s happening in their city.

An inning in a T20 match lasts for around 90 minutes, which is followed by a 10-minute break, and then the next inning takes place. A 10-minute break is much shorter than breaks in ODIs and test matches, which keeps the excitement alive.

Unlike ODIs and test matches, where most players of a batting team (except for the two players who are in the middle to bat) stay in the dressing room, in T20 matches, all players of the batting team sit close to the ground, like in football.

As a T20 game progresses, you can see the emotion and excitement on their faces, which gives a totally different vibe to cricket. In a T20 match, a bowler can bowl a maximum of 4 overs in an uninterrupted match.

During the match, on the leg side, there can’t be more than five fielders. During the powerplay (the first six overs), the fielding restrictions require that maximum two fielders can be positioned outside the 30-yard circle. But, after the first six overs, maximum five fielders can be outside the fielding circle.

In case a bowler bowls a no-ball by overstepping, an additional one run is given to the batting team, and the next ball is declared a “free hit.” The only way a batsman can lose his wicket on a free-hit is by getting run out, by hitting the ball twice, or by blocking the field.

What happens when a T20 match ends up in a tie?

If a T20 match ends in a tie, which means both teams end up scoring exactly the same number of runs, then the tie is decided based on a “Super Over.” In a super over, each team has to decide three batsmen from their line-up and one bowler, who will represent them and bat in the super over (six balls).

The team, which batted second in the match, bats first in the super over, while the team, which batted first, bats second. Two batsmen take the crease, and if one gets out, the third batsman walks in. If two batsmen get out within the super over, then their inning is over.

The team batting second has to score one run more than the runs scored by the team batting first. But what if a super over ends in a tie as well? If this happens in a group stage match, then the match will be declared as tied. If a super over is tied in the knockout stage of a tournament, then it will get repeated until a winner is decided.

ICC T20 World Cup winners list

Here’s the list of winners of ICC T20 World Cup since the tournament started. West Indies has won the world cup twice, in 2012 and 2016. India, Pakistan, England, and Sri Lanka have won it once each.

Year Winner
2007 India
2009 Pakistan
2010 England
2012 West Indies
2014 Sri Lanka
2016 West Indies

Read Related: T20 World Cup: Schedule, Match time table, venues, timings and fixtures

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