What Is Follow On In Cricket

The regulation known as the follow-on stipulates that the side that bats second in a test match must immediately resume batting after the completion of their first innings. In a test match, the follow-on is only allowed to be used if the side that bats first manages to amass a first-innings advantage of at least 200 runs. 

The team that bats first in a competition that consists of two innings and lasts for at least five days has the option of forcing the opposing team to follow their innings if they have a lead of at least 200 runs after the first inning.

If the team that bats second scores a number of runs that is significantly lower than the total scored by the team that bats first, the captain of the team that bats first must make a decision regarding whether or not to enforce the follow-on rule once more on the team that bats second or whether or not to continue with the original order of play in which they themselves bat their second innings.

Enforcement Of This Rule 

The continuation is not always required; the captain of the team that is currently in the lead determines whether or not to require it. The follow-on is virtually always thought to be enforced, according to conventional thinking. The primary objective of enforcing the follow-on is to eliminate the possibility of a draw occurring.

When batting last, the team that is pursuing the target score has the opportunity to play conservatively and soak up the time in an effort to draw rather than lose the match. However, since the follow-on offers them more time, this tactic is made more difficult.

Since the chasing team has already scored a lower score than the team in front of them, and the condition of the field often gets worse as the game goes on, enforcing the follow-on can further enhance the pressure that is placed on that team.

Advantages Of Enforcing This Rule 

Enforcing the follow-up can increase your entire team’s confidence. Particularly your bowlers! It communicates to them that the skipper believes in their ability to take another ten wickets. It shows the opposition team that you have the upper hand in the match and are determined to win! Because the follow-up is rarely used, it may be a major psychological blow to the opposition. 

It allows you to complete the game more quickly. In some games, your team may only have to bat once. If the ball is swinging about and the overhead and pitch conditions are favorable for bowling, it may be prudent to enforce the follow-on and force the other side to bat again. It’s usually a good idea to take advantage of favorable bowling circumstances when you can.

Disadvantages Of This Rule

Making your bowlers bowl again immediately after finishing full innings may cause them to get quite weary. If your bowlers are overtired, the quality of their bowling may suffer, allowing the other side to score heavily in the second innings. 

If you enforce the follow-on, your side will bat last if they have to bat again. If the pitch is spinning a lot or has major cracks emerging in the surface, you should avoid batting last because it is the most difficult moment to get runs!

Instead, reject making the opposite side bat last on a deteriorating pitch and accumulate up some runs in your own batting innings before forcing the rival team to bat last.

Also Read: What Is A Bio-Bubble In The IPL?

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