When starting your bowling innings, first take note if there is a powerplay rule in effect. In a T20 match, powerplay 1 will take effect in the first six overs of the innings while in an ODI match it will take effect in the first ten overs. If the powerplay is in effect, bear in mind that only two fielders can be on the boundary or outside of the inner ring. In a test match or a game with no powerplay, (or during powerplay 3) the bowling side may have up to five fielders outside of the ring. Take note that it is not permitted to have more than two fielders behind the batsman’s crease on the leg side. Image 1 above shows a quite basic test match starting field.
Adjusting The Field To Your Bowler
A seam bowler might bowl full and straight and pitch the ball slightly offside providing the batsman opportunities to play front foot drives, causing the ball to go in regions 105 to 108 (image 3) . In this case the bowling team might want fielders in the positions 7, 8, 9, 17 (image 1) to stop singles, take catches and provide run-out opportunities. If the batsman is scoring boundaries try placing fielders at positions 13, 14, 15, 16, 29 to stop boundaries and take catches. Also put slips (3 and 4) incase the batsman misjudges the delivery and snicks the ball.
A pace bowler delivering the ball short and going down leg will be getting the ball hit more often in areas 101, 102, 103. Short deliveries going down leg side have a good chance of going up into the air so think of placing fielders on the boundary at positions 24, 25, 26, 27 for a chance to stop boundaries and take catches.
Adjusting To Left/Right Batting Combination
As a fielding team, there are times when there is going to a left handed and a right handed batsman at the crease. This means that the leg-side and off-side might swop over multiple times during an over. Instead of making the entire fielding team move over to the same position on opposite sides of the field, shift them according to positions near the spot they are standing. For example instead of point position and square leg swopping over to the other side of the field, adjust point to be square leg and vice versa. You could place mid-on to cow corner, mid-off to mid-on and deep extra cover to mid-off.
Images and information from Howzattt: My Cricket Record Book.
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