The scoresheets that we use are divided into:


3 main sections (which are used more or less continually) and

2 other sections (which are only used either at the end of an over or

                              at the fall of a wicket)


The 3 main sections are:


Bowling analysis – something is entered here after every ball

At a Glance score – something is entered here every time the score advances

                            (whether runs or extras)

Batting analysis (+extras box) – something is entered here every time a

                                              batsman scores a run(s) or extras accrue



These 3 sections are coloured yellow, green and purple and numbered 1, 2 and 3 respectively on the blank scoresheet below:



Very important:  When filling in the scoresheet, stick to this order: 1, 2 and then 3 – in other words, let your pen (or pencil, for the traditionalists) hover over the Bowling analysis box in the first instance.



Bowling analysis


This is the critical one! Keep this accurate and everything else will follow. The boxes for each over are not very big, so don’t ‘spread’ too much early in the over – there may be a spate of wides and/or no balls to come!


Please keep to the pattern of:   1   3   5

                                             2   4   6

for the six balls in each over.


‘Dot balls’ – simply put a dot in the relevant place in the over box.


Scoring strokes – simply enter the number of runs scored off the relevant ball, i.e. 1, 2, 3, 4, or 6 (very occasionally a 5, or even more occasionally, a 7 can be scored with the benefit of overthrows).


Extrasbyes and leg byes are shown by means of a ‘blob’, i.e. a heavier version of a dot ball. Don’t attempt to distinguish between, for example, a single leg bye, 2 byes, 4 leg byes, etc. – simply show any number of byes and leg byes by means of a blob, but do at the time make a note on the back of the scoresheet of all such byes and leg byes, in chronological order.



Wides are shown by a ‘plus’ sign, i.e. +


If the batsmen run off a wide, this is shown as follows:



(Of course, any runs taken off a wide are not credited to the facing batsman).


No balls are shown by a dot within a circle, i.e.  


If the batsman on strike scores a run(s) off the bat from a no ball, the number of runs scored is shown within the circle in lieu of the dot, e.g:



Runs taken from a no ball which are not off the bat are shown by putting the relevant number of dots within the circle, i.e:




The quicker-thinking amongst you will have spotted the problem when a single run (not off the bat) is taken from a no ball. We can’t put a single dot in the circle, as that, as we have seen, is the conventional symbol for a no ball from which no runs are taken, so my solution is to put a small cross in the circle, like so:




which shows that the batsmen have, in effect, ‘crossed’.


Remember that such ‘not off the bat’ runs off a no ball (or off a wide, for that matter) do not then somehow become byes or leg byes. Umpires, having signalled a wide or no ball, should not then signal byes or leg byes for the same ball. 


If runs off the bat are scored from a no ball, make sure these are not entered in the ‘extras’ box at the bottom of the Batting analysis section; they are credited to the facing batsman. Only the no ball itself goes into the extras box. (See below for more on the ‘extras’ box).


How to cope with additional balls resulting from wides and no balls in the Bowling analysis

Possibly the trickiest problem for a scorer is the nightmare of a wayward over bestrewn with wides and/or no balls, given the limited space you have to work in. Let’s imagine an over which comprises the following sequence of balls:


Dot ball, wide, 1 run scored, wide (batsmen run 1), 2 runs scored, no ball, 1 run scored, dot ball, wide, 1 run scored.


Not quite the worst case scenario, but pretty bad nonetheless! Here’s how to deal with it. Keep in mind the   1  3  5  
                                                                                                                                                            2  4  6 sequence of showing balls.


What you need to do is visualise the over box divided into three vertical sections, like so:




You must ensure that the first two ‘legitimate’ balls in the over are confined to the first of these three notional sub-divisions; the third and fourth legitimate balls to the middle sub-division; and the fifth and sixth legitimate balls to the right-hand sub-division.  


Additional balls over and above the ‘conventional’ six in the over should be entered on the right-hand side of each of these notional three ‘columns’, so that over would be entered as follows:




So, if ball numbers 1, 3 or 5 are wides or no balls, the next ball bowled is entered just to the right, but within that same notional sub-division. If the next ball is a legitimate one, that’s fine, and you then return to the ‘main’ part of the sub-division to enter it. If, however, the next ball is another wide or no ball, enter it below the second ball, in this ‘secondary’ column. You only return to the main part of the sub-division when a legitimate ball is bowled.


If ball numbers 2, 4 or 6 are wides or no balls, the procedure is slightly different. In entering the wide or no ball you will effectively have completed the ‘main’ part of the column, so you must then move to the secondary column immediately to its right. The next ball is entered here, and this particular sub-division is completed as soon as a legitimate ball is bowled.


All this is obviously not easy to explain in words! A particularly dire sequence of wides and/or no balls could mean that you end up with a ‘mini column’ of two or even three balls to the right of one of the ‘main’ columns before you are finally able to return to that column to complete it, or move on to the next sub-division. If you sense that a particular over is going to turn into one of these nightmare ones, the ‘nuclear option’ is to start entering the sequence of balls on the reverse side of the scoresheet, simply for clarity. Even with the sharpest of pencils, trying to show a 10- or 11-ball over accurately and legibly in the very small box you have to play with is sometimes pretty nigh impossible.


Wickets are shown as ‘W’ in all cases except run outs, which are not credited to the bowler. I’m not sure if there is a convention for showing run outs; I tend to mark the ball with a little series of ‘mini dots’ like so:


simply so I can find it when I run through the innings ball by ball later.


Remember that in the case of a run out, any completed runs are credited to the batsman on strike, so if one of the batsmen is run out going for a second or third run, ‘1’ or ‘2’ respectively would be entered, with the ‘mini dots’ shown alongside.


Maiden overs and wicket maiden overs are shown by joining up all the dots (and blobs) within the relevant individual over box to form an ‘M’ or ‘W’ respectively. Remember that byes and leg byes do not count against a bowler, but that wides and no balls do.


‘Crossing batsmen’


Sometimes batsmen cross and it’s not obvious from the details contained in the Bowling analysis boxes that they have done so. It’s very useful for me to have a record kept of these instances when I work through an innings ball by ball, post-match. This can happen:


  • when a batsman is out caught and the ball is in the air long enough for he and his partner to cross;
  • in the course of a run out dismissal – when the batsmen have crossed before the wicket is broken by the fielding side;
  • in the rare event of the umpire signalling ‘one short’ (for example, two runs are taken but the first is signalled as ‘short’. The batsman on strike when the ball was bowled will then remain on strike, but from the scoresheet it would appear that, as only 1 run has been scored, his partner should be facing the next ball).


Show such instances by means of a small cross next to the relevant ball, like so:


Sometimes, an outgoing batsman’s surviving partner may absent-mindedly wander back to the end he was at prior to the ball which accounted for his partner – normally in the case of a ‘caught’ dismissal. Of course, the umpire should spot this and order him to move to the correct end, but if this doesn’t happen, you just have to go with the flow and ignore what should have happened.

Bowlers’ cumulative total of runs conceded over by over
are shown in the smaller box immediately below the main over box. Remember that byes and leg byes do not count against a bowler’s figures, but wides and no balls do.


An optional extra: At the end of a bowler’s spell, draw a heavy vertical line down the end of his ‘box’ – if he then returns later in the innings to bowl further overs, simply then start off again in the next box after the heavy line.


Here’s a couple of relatively uncommon occurrences that you also need to know how to deal with:


Bowler sustaining an injury and not being able to complete his over


If this happens simply start a ‘new’ over against the ‘substitute’ bowler’s name. The original bowler will then end up having bowled a part over (as will, of course, the substitute bowler).


More than eight bowlers used in an innings


This can happen particularly in weekend games (the Saturday Dorset fixture is a case in point, where Phil Sterling likes to give as many of his team as possible a chance to turn their arm over).


Our scoresheets only have space for eight bowlers, so you will need to ‘double up’ in order to accommodate any additional bowlers. What I do is to start Bowler 9’s analysis somewhere around Over 17 or 18 on Bowler 1’s row – you need to make sure you leave sufficient space to be able to give Bowler 9 his full potential quota of overs (and don’t forget to put his name in as well). This should also give you enough space to be able to insert Bowler 1’s completed analysis (overs/maidens/runs/wickets) in the remaining over boxes before Bowler 9’s analysis starts. For any additional bowlers, follow the same procedure, but on Bowler 2’s ‘row’, and so on.



At a Glance score


Once you’ve filled in the Bowling analysis for each ball, if the score has advanced then move upwards to the ‘At a Glance score’ section.


This is pretty straightforward compared to the many complications which can arise with the Bowling analysis! For single runs or extras simply cross off with a diagonal stroke the next figure printed on the scoresheet. When more than a single run or extra is scored, it’s then much easier for me to run through the innings later if, rather than crossing each individual figure off one by one, for 2s, 3s, 4s, etc. a horizontal line is used to cross off the relevant number of runs (or extras, of course).


In the case of wides or no balls from which runs (whether off the bat or otherwise) are taken, don’t ‘separate out’ the wide or no ball from the runs taken off it – in other words, for (say) a wide ball which goes flying through to the boundary, cross off 5 figures with a horizontal line; not 1 and then an additional 4. Similarly, for a no ball from which the batsman on strike takes 2 runs, cross off 3 figures; not 1 and then the additional 2.  


When there’s a suitable break in play and you decide to do a quick periodic check on the score, work ‘inwards’ to the At a Glance score from both the Bowling analysis and the Batting analysis, and everything should tally!




Batting analysis


Again, compared to the Bowling Analysis, this is quite straightforward. Move to this section of the scoresheet after 1) Bowling analysis and 2) At a Glance score sections have been completed.


Simply enter scoring strokes in the long box after the batsman’s name, with a ‘dot’ in between each entry (this just makes it easier to read when adding up the batsman’s score). You can also enter a supplementary total in brackets during a long innings, again to help in adding up – sod’s law will probably ensure that the batsman gets out next ball! One refinement which I have come across is that, as well as scoring shots, some scorers enter all ‘dot balls’ which a batsman faces. However, with a long innings you can easily run short of space, so on balance, I wouldn’t recommend you try to do this.


When a batsman is out:


  • Close off the line of his innings with a double chevron, like so:  >>  This should span both lines of his innings box, unless he has done well enough to have progressed to the second line, in which case just enter the chevron in the second line.
  • Enter the method of dismissal, keeping the ‘Bowler’ column clear for the bowler’s name alone, except in the case of run outs, where the word ‘run’ goes into the ‘How out’ column and the word ‘out’ goes into the ‘Bowler’ column. (‘Not out’ is dealt with similarly).
  • If you don’t already know it, try to get the fielder/wicket-keeper’s name for catches and stumpings at the time.
  • Enter the batsman’s completed score in the ‘Total’ column.


If a batsman retires, whether via the notorious ’25 and retire’ rule or otherwise, do not put anything in the ‘How out’, ‘Bowler’ or ‘Total’ columns, in case he later returns to the crease. If he does not return, complete his details at the end of the innings, entering him as ‘NOT OUT (RETIRED)’. However, at the point where he retires, make a note on the back of the scoresheet of the current total, so partnership details can be entered later.


Remember that ‘DID NOT BAT’ is only to be entered against batsmen who did not get to the wicket at all – if they were at the wicket at the end of the innings but did not face a ball, they are ‘NOT OUT’.



‘Extras’ box


I treat this as part and parcel of the Batting analysis. Enter extras as they accrue, in exactly the same way as batsmen’s runs, with the relevant numbers, e.g. 4 leg byes would be entered as ‘4’, not ‘’ Remember that no balls from which runs are scored off the bat will only be shown as ‘1’ in the No Ball box, with the additional runs being credited to the batsman. However, no balls (and wides) from which runs not off the bat are taken are shown as 1+1, 1+2, 1+4, etc.   




The two other sections of the scoresheet are:


Fall of wickets and Rate per over

These 2 sections are coloured red and blue and numbered 4 and 5 respectively on the attached blank scoresheet.

Fall of wickets

Go straight to this box after you’ve dealt with the outgoing batsman’s details. The three columns are straightforward. Again, beware of retiring batsmen – this is not the fall of a wicket! Following a retirement, wait until the next wicket falls before filling in the Fall of wickets section, and indicate the two (or possibly more) separate partnerships which have preceded it, like so:



having made a note on the back of the scoresheet of the total at the retirement point(s).


Also beware of absent-mindedly filling in the ‘Rate per over’ section at the fall of a wicket, unless of course it is in fact the end of an over (wickets do often fall at the end of an over!)



Rate per over


Go to this religiously at the end of every over, once you have completed the other sections, as it provides an invaluable aid in later following the build-up of the score (it’s also the best way to check in which overs byes and leg byes have accrued if they have not been highlighted in the Bowling analysis – which is often the case with many scorers…)


Don’t forget to fill in this section when the fall of a wicket occurs on the last ball of an over!


The 3 columns are self-explanatory – just to reinforce the point that on those rare occasions when an over has to be completed by a different bowler, enter the two bowlers’ numbers like so:   2/3, 4/6, etc.



At the end of the innings:


  • Complete both batsmen’s details.
  • Obtain the names of any batsmen who have not made it to the wicket and enter ‘Did not bat’ against their names. (If more than say, 3 batsmen did not bat, rather than laboriously entering ‘Did not bat’ against every name, you can write these words diagonally across the relevant innings boxes, with a line extending either side).
  • Total up all batsmen’s scores, plus extras, and enter the final innings total in the box immediately below the ‘Extras’ box. To the right of this, enter the number of wickets that have fallen, and the number of overs that the innings has comprised. N.B: Enter part overs as, e.g. 17.1, 18.3, 19.5, etc., with the number after the decimal place simply representing the number of ‘odd’ balls, not the actual fraction of an over the number of odd balls comprises, e.g. 18.3 obviously in ‘real’ terms is 18.5 overs, but this is not used.
  • Complete the ‘Fall of wickets’ section, if the innings ends with the fall of a wicket. At this point, you can deal with any remaining partnerships which have not already been recorded (for instance, if there has been a retirement since the fall of the penultimate wicket).
  • In the Bowling analysis section, complete each bowler’s individual analysis in the ‘summary’ boxes on the right-hand side. Show part overs bowled as per point 3 above. For cases where more than 8 bowlers have been used, see the above notes for where to accommodate the additional bowling summary/summaries.


End of innings score checks


  • The cumulative total of all bowlers’ runs, wides and no balls, as shown in the Bowling analysis, plus byes and leg byes, should tally with the final ‘At a glance’ figure crossed off.
  • The cumulative total of all batsmen’s scores, plus all extras shown in the Extras box, should also tally with the ‘At a glance’ section.
  • The total of all completed stands shown in the Fall of wickets section, plus (if relevant) the undefeated last stand, should also tally with the ‘At a glance’ section.
  • The final figure in the ‘Total score’ column of the ‘Rate per over’ section should also tally with the ‘At a glance’ section.





There – I told you it was easy!





P.T.   6 March 2012 

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