Freehit Rules: Check out concept of Free Hit in Cricket

Updated on: Jul 9, 2023 5:25 pm IST


Cricket, renowned for its intricacies and unique set of rules, has introduced an exhilarating element known as the “Free Hit.” The Free Hit rule is a fascinating addition that has enhanced the excitement and drama within the game. Let’s delve deeper into the intricacies of this rule and its impact on cricket.

Freehit Rules

The Freehit rule comes into play when a no-ball is called by the umpire due to the bowler overstepping the crease or delivering an illegal front-foot delivery, commonly known as a foot fault. Upon the umpire’s declaration of a no-ball, the subsequent delivery is designated as a Free Hit. This implies that the batsman cannot be dismissed by any means except through a run-out.

The International Cricket Council (ICC) introduced the Free Hit rule in 2007, which has since had a profound influence on the dynamics of the game. A no-ball can occur due to various reasons, such as the bowler overstepping the popping crease or delivering a high full-toss above waist height. Once the umpire signals a no-ball, the following delivery is deemed a Free Hit. This provision grants the batting side an opportunity to score runs without the fear of losing their wicket, except in the case of a run-out. The introduction of the Freehit rule has added an extra dimension to the game, altering the strategies and approaches of both bowlers and batsmen.

The Free Hit rule compels bowlers to be more cautious and disciplined with their deliveries. A no-ball not only results in an additional run being awarded but also grants the batsman the freedom to unleash their shots without the risk of dismissal. Consequently, bowlers have become more focused on maintaining their footing behind the crease and refining their delivery techniques. The fear of giving away free runs and potential momentum shifts has urged bowlers to pay meticulous attention to their actions.

Moreover, the Free Hit rule has prompted bowlers to explore innovative field placements and variations in deliveries. To curtail the batsman’s scoring opportunities during a Free Hit, bowlers strategize meticulously, seeking ways to restrict their opponents. The rule has induced a captivating chess match between bowlers and batsmen, with the former devising plans to stifle the latter’s progress while the latter looks for loopholes to exploit and accumulate runs.

Undeniably, the Free Hit rule has injected excitement into the game, but it has not been immune to criticism and controversy. Some argue that the rule excessively favors batsmen, enabling them to play without the fear of getting out. Critics contend that this tilts the balance in favor of the batting side and reduces the skill differential between batsmen and bowlers. Additionally, opponents of the Free Hit rule argue that it places an undue burden on bowlers, who must be even more cautious and precise with their deliveries to avoid costly no-balls.

However, despite the criticisms, the Free Hit rule remains a captivating aspect of modern cricket. Its introduction has added a layer of thrill and unpredictability to the game, making every delivery and its aftermath all the more significant. Batsmen are granted an opportunity to capitalize on poor deliveries and boost the scoring rate, while bowlers are forced to exhibit discipline and precision to avoid granting their opponents an advantage.

In conclusion, the Free Hit rule in cricket has revolutionized the sport, altering the dynamics between bowlers and batsmen. It provides an exciting opportunity for batsmen to score freely without the risk of dismissal, except through a run-out. Simultaneously, it places an increased burden on bowlers, demanding accuracy and discipline to avoid costly no-balls. While the rule has faced criticism for its impact on the balance of the game, its overall contribution to the excitement and strategy of cricket cannot be undermined. The Free Hit rule continues to captivate players and fans alike, leaving them eagerly anticipating the next thrilling moment it unfolds on the cricket field.

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