Innings In Cricket Explained – What You Need to Know

Read this quick guide on how innings in cricket work and you will be guided.

‘Innings’ is a very popular word in Cricket. Cricket innings depict an entire match. An inning builds part of the foundation of the match of Cricket. If you can learn what they are and how they work, you will quickly increase your understanding of the sport. I am often surprised how many newcomers to the game are still determining what an inning is, how many of them are in each type of Cricket, and how they are finished. If you are willing to know the answer to any of these, or even if you want to grab some extra information on this topic, stick with me because you will find out what you want to know exactly by reading this post.

What is an inning?

An inning is a period in a game of Cricket during which a particular team or player is batting. Let’s expand my example further. Imagine England batting 1st in a test match against Australia and scoring 400 with all ten wickets being taken by the Australian team. This score of 400 runs would be counted as a completed inning for the England team. Within that team inning of 400 runs, smaller individual innings belong to each England batter.

For example, if Joe Root scores 150 as part of the team score of 400 runs, this would be a vital individual inning contributing to a solid team innings. If Jos Buttler made a swift 30 runs, this would be a smaller inning contributing to the team total.

Types of innings in Cricket:

First Class Cricket

If you are talking about first-class Cricket, then there is no such limit on the number of deliveries that can be bowled throughout an inning. It could be possible during a first-class match if one team were stable enough to bat for 1500+ deliveries. However, team innings could also be ended much quicker than this. First-class cricket innings will go on until the bowling side ends the innings, or until the batting side finishes the innings themselves by declaring, etc. First-class innings could also be finished due to the end of the game occurring.

20 Over Cricket

In 20-over cricket matches, each team can bat for a maximum of 20 overs. Twenty overs = 120 balls, so each team inning in this kind of Cricket will be a maximum of 120 balls long. As with all kinds of crickets, the innings could finish earlier if the batting team gets delivered balls or chases down their target runs successfully. So, all you need to get is that team innings in 20-over Cricket could last for any number of balls up to 120 deliveries.

50-Over Cricket

Many international (ODI) matches and domestic limited-overs games are 50 overs per side games. Each team can bat for a maximum of 50 overs during a game. As many of us know, 50 overs consist 300 balls. So, the most number of balls in an inning of 50 over Cricket cannot be more than 300.

Of course, not every inning in 50-over Cricket lasts for a maximum of 300 balls. A team could be delivered balls out much earlier. A team batting at the second can also chase down the target score in fewer balls. However, as the bowling side is only able to deliver a maximum of 300 balls, any one batter could not possibly face more than 300 balls.

Test Cricket

In test cricket, a team can bat twice, meaning that two cricket innings per team are permitted in these games. It adds up to a total of 4 innings in test matches. However, this only happens in some tests. Sometimes the team batting 1st will get such a big 1st-innings lead that they can enforce the follow-on, and this gives them a chance to achieve an innings victory. An innings victory means that one team can force a victory whilst only batting once. Compared to the 2 times the opposing team batted.

An inning may end in a few ways, such as when all but one batter on the team is out or in limited over matches when the limited number of overs for that innings have been bowled.


However, a cricket inning is one of the divisions of cricket during which one of the two teams takes its turn to bat. In fact, innings also mean the period in which an individual player does batting. The innings differ according to the various modes of cricket.

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