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Shot is a cricket shot used by a batsman to deflect a ball from a bowler. Depending on the technical arsenal of the player, his experience and the characteristics of a particular game episode, it can be traditional and unorthodox, vertical or horizontal, and so on.

There are several types of shots classification. One of the most popular is based on the principle of the supporting leg (with a forward lunge or backward deflection):

Front foot shots Back foot shots
Straight Drive Back Foot Drive
Cover Drive Back Foot Defence
On Drive Square Cut
Square Drive Pull Shot
Forward Defence Hook Shot
Sweep Back Foot Leg Glance
Reverse Sweep Uppercut
Front Foot Leg Glance

Ramp Shot and Switch Hit stand out in a separate group.

Front foot shots are performed with an exit towards the serve, provided that it is directed to the sector between a good Length and yorker:

  1. Straight Drive is considered one of the most beautiful hits in icricket. It is more often used at the good length along the Middle stump / Off stump line. When performing this type of shot, the supporting leg goes forward and bends slightly. The bat is facing the wide side of the bowler, the elbow goes up almost perpendicular to it.
  2. Cover Drive. It is similar to the previous one but differs in direction (to the right towards Covers, hence the name Shot). The pivot foot is set in the off side direction, the bat turns towards the cover-fielders since the main task of the batsman, in this case, is to send the ball past them, avoiding an outage.
  3. On Drive. Unlike shots of the first and second types, the ball is directed to the leg side in this case. The supporting leg is in front, and the knee is slightly bent, the wide side of the bat is directed towards the Leg side of the bowler, the elbow is pulled up. On drive is one of the potentially dangerous shots for the batsman, as it can lead to LBW if it is executed with a spade that is too wide.
  4. Square Drive. It is a risky shot because the ball is directed perpendicular to the off side when executed correctly. The supporting leg is bent, the head is on the knee line, but the elbow does not go to the maximum height since the batsman’s task is to trace the rebound while maintaining the maximum free coordination of movements.
  5. Forward Defense. The main difference between this shot and previous ones is that the ball is not directed to a specific zone: ideally, the batsman should simply intercept it near the wicket, redirecting it to the pitch. It is used in situations of a direct threat to stakes. The supporting leg goes forward, the head is above the knee, the bat is deployed at an angle at a minimum distance from it, with a slight slope to the ground. When performing this shot, the player often uses the so-called soft grip (Soft hands) to reduce the speed of the ball.
  6. Sweep. This shot is relatively new and is mainly used against slow bowlers. The ball is directed towards the leg side, while the batsman adopts a low stance with a lunge, which should be wide enough, but without disturbing the coordination of movements. The bat turns towards the lleg side. This shot is less effective on high-rebound pitches, but at the same time,, it is quite dangerous for the attacking team. Therefore, in some cases, the captain can perform forced castling, sending additional fielders to this part of the field.
  7. Reverse Sweep. Identical to the previous shot with the difference that the ball is directed to the off side, so for the correct execution, the batsman must change the grip (right hand over left).
  8. Front Foot Leg Glance. The ball is directed to the leg side, and the batsman does not need to be highly accurate, since it all depends on how quickly he managed to intercept the ball. The leg goes forward, the elbow is up, the bat is aligned parallel to the supporting leg. When receiving the ball, the player must turn it towards the Leg side with one movement, without changing the position as a whole.

When performing back foot shots, the batsman literally “backs away”; in this case, the role of the supporting leg is played by the one behind. They are typically used on high-bounce pitches.

  1. Back Foot Drive. The ball goes to the front sector off side. Before the reception, the batsman makes the so-called “trigger movement”: a small step back, the elbow goes high up, the bat is deployed strictly vertically along the line of the ball.
  2. Back Foot Defense. The task of the player who decides to execute this type of shot is to intercept the ball, directing it to the ground, out of reach of the fielders. The supporting leg goes back a little, the back is straightened, the elbow is extended up, the bat is turned vertically at a slight angle to the pitch.
  3. Square Cut. It is considered an ideal weapon against the insufficiently accurate feed. The ball is directed to the central part of the off side zone: the supporting leg is behind, the elbow is aligned parallel to the pitch, the bat continues the line of the arm. The player’s task is to receive the ball as late as possible so that the fielders do not guess the direction of the subsequent rebound.
  4. Pull shot. Another tricky hit that is nevertheless quite effective even against fast bowlers. The supporting leg is behind, the bat is directed horizontally forward, and the body is turned slightly to the left, allowing to redirect the ball to the leg side effectively.
  5. Hook Shot. Practically no different from the previous one, but in this case, the bit is raised to the shoulder level to reflect the “high” feed. The weight is carried back, the arms are extended, the body is extended, the other leg can be lifted off the ground. As in the case of the pull Shot, the additional acceleration is given to the ball primarily by turning the batsman’s torso.
  6. Back Foot Leg Glance. It also goes to the leg side. The supporting leg is behind, the elbow goes up, the bat is directed vertically downward with a slight slope to the right. In this case, the player should strive not to put as much effort into the blow as possible but to meet the ball as late as possible, directing it to the Leg side sector that is most inconvenient for the opponent.
  7. Uppercut. One of the “young” shots, which is more often used in the limited-overs format. The ball goes up over the off side; for the best effect, the player rests on the back foot, swinging the bat horizontally, just above the shoulders, with a slope towards the off side.

Interestingly: ramp shot and switch hit are new punches used relatively rarely, especially in test cricket. So, the first is considered quite dangerous because, throwing the ball over himself, the batsman risks hitting the head. Correct execution of the second, i.e. switch hit, requires a mirrored change of position, which many players find uncomfortable.

Nisha Bhavani
Author: Nisha Bhavani Position: Cricket Expert
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