What Are The Umpire Signals In Cricket?

What are the umpire signals in cricket? Different Types and their meaning

The umpires and match scores maintain an important relation in a reputed sport like cricket. In other words, the umpire signals in cricket are the mode of communication to players.

Even after watching cricket for many years, some fans become confused in understanding the umpire signals.

There are more than 15 types of umpire signals in cricket to indicate the boundaries, dismissals, and extras. Also, they can indicate the timeout or drinks break.

These signals or actions by the cricket umpires help to provide immediate feedback to players on the outcome of their actions.

As a result, it becomes essential for players, spectators and match officials to understand various umpire signals in cricket to ensure the fair gameplay progresses.

Before knowing the umpire signals in cricket, it is mandatory to know their standing positions on-field.

As a traditional practice, you will find two umpires, one at the bowler’s end and the other at the striker’s end on the leg side. Additionally, an off-field or third umpire sits in front of the TV screen with an advanced replaying monitoring system. The role of third umpires comes into action when players decide to ask for a review or the on-field umpires require further assistance. Upon further scrutiny, the on-field umpire’s decision might get revoked at times.

Mainly, umpire indication in certain cases like “no-ball” or “dead ball” alerts the batsman that they aren’t dismissed on that particular delivery.

Typically, you might have observed that umpires use their hands often to provide signals. It includes indicating the powerplay sessions as well.

Umpire Signals in Cricket for Dismissals

A cricket umpire raises their index finger upwards to indicate a batsman’s dismissal by the opposite team and declares it as “OUT”.

These are the common and rare dismissals an umpire signals in cricket commonly by pointing out the index finger in the air:

  • Caught
  • Bowled
  • Run Out
  • Stump Out
  • LBW (Leg Before Wicket)
  • Hit Wicket
  • Obstructing the Field
  • Hit the ball twice
  • Timed Out
  • Handing the ball

Umpire Signals in Cricket for Revoked Decisions: “NOT OUT” and “DRS”!

When a player takes a DRS (Decision Review System) successfully and a third umpire overturns the on-field umpire’s decision, it is called a “Revoked Decision”.

In such circumstances, this is one of the rare umpire signals in cricket by crossing their hands over their shoulders.

Furthermore,  if an “OUT” decision is overturned, the umpire should confirm that the batsman is “NOT OUT” and signal by unfolding both their arms in a waving motion in front of the chest.

How does the umpire signal in cricket for DRS or Third Umpire?

If the batting or fielding side has taken the DRS, the on-field umpire indicates the third umpire by forming a box or square shape with their hands. Additionally, the on-field umpires can use the same signal if they want to know the accurate decision of dismissals such as:

  • Stump outs
    • Run-outs
    • Catch-outs
    • Check if the ball touches the boundary rope or not

Umpires in Cricket Is Defined – How Does It Work?

Umpire Signals in Cricket for Boundaries

Here are the most popular and well-known umpire signals in cricket for boundaries:

1. Fours:

When a batsman hits the ball and reaches the boundary after bouncing at least once, the umpire signals it as “Four” runs by sweeping their hand back and forth either in front of the chest or waist.

2. Sixes:

If the ball sails over the boundary ropes without bouncing on the ground, the umpires raise both their hands in the air and above their head to indicate “Six” runs.

Umpire Signals in Cricket for Extras

Most often you may observe that the umpire signals for extras in cricket with different gestures as discussed below:

1. Wide:

The umpire awards an extra run to the batting side as “Wide” if the ball reaches out of the batsman’s reach. To indicate a wide ball, the umpire signals by stretching both their arms horizontally.

2. No-Ball:

When a bowler’s foot crosses the crease while bowling, the umpire declares it a “No Ball”.

Furthermore, the umpire signals in cricket for illegal deliveries like No ball include extending one arm horizontally.

3. Free Hit:

The umpire signals a free hit after a no-ball, particularly in limited-overs cricket such as:

  • One-Day Internationals, (ODIs)
  • Twenty20 Internationals (T20Is)
  • T10 format.

Moreover, it is a licence for a batsman to play freely without having the fear of dismissal following the umpire’s indication by holding one hand above their head and rotating in a circular motion.

3. Leg Byes:

The umpire signal in cricket for Leg Byes is followed by raising a knee and tapping with one hand. This action is followed when a batsman starts running if the ball strikes their pads rather than the cricket bat.

4. Byes:

If the ball travels past the stumps and reaches the boundary or the batsman takes runs without hitting their bat or body, the umpire extends one arm above their head to indicate byes.

5. Penalty Runs:

A batting or bowling side has to face the consequences in the form of penalty runs for violating the rules. The Umpire signals in cricket for penalty runs can be observed by tapping or keeping their hand on the opposite side of the shoulder.

Additional Umpire Signals in Cricket

There are additional signals cricket umpires implement during the match such as:

1. Powerplay:

In limited-overs cricket, powerplay is a fair chance given to the batting side to score maximum runs. The umpire signals in cricket to communicate the field restrictions during the powerplay can be witnessed as they rotate their arm in a clockwise motion.

2. Time Out:

The umpires indicate time out or drinks break session by raising both hands above their heads and pointing to their wristwatch with a finger from their other hand.

3. New Ball:

A cricket umpire holds the new ball and shows it to all players and audiences.

4. Soft Signals and Bouncer Balls:

People often confuse themselves with the umpire calls of bouncers and soft signals in cricket. The on-field umpire provides a soft signal to the third umpire to indicate the possible outcome by placing a sign of out or not out near their chest.

Contrarily, a bouncer is a ball that crosses the batsman’s shoulder level and there is a restriction of two bouncers in an over. The umpire signal in cricket for bouncer balls is tapping their right shoulder and lifting the fingers based on the number of such deliveries bowled.

5. Short Run:

A match umpire declares the Short-run or incomplete run when a batsman fails to ground their bat beyond the crease while taking runs on both the striker and non-striker’s end. The umpire signals it by extending their arm and tapping on their shoulder to indicate the invalid runs to the batting side.

6. Dead Ball:

The umpire sweeps both their arms to indicate a dead ball due to various circumstances.

7. Last Hour:

Usually, umpires point out the last hour of test cricket by using the other hand to indicate the watch on their raised wrist.

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