Limited overs cricket

The Melbourne Cricket Ground hosts an ODI match between Australia and India. The two players in yellow are the batsmen and those in blue are the fielding team.
A day match at Bellerive Oval

Limited overs cricket, also known as one-day cricket, which includes List A cricket and Twenty20 cricket, is a version of the sport of cricket in which a match is generally completed in one day, whereas Test and first-class matches can take up to five days to complete. The name reflects the rule that in the match each team bowls a set maximum number of overs, usually between 20 and 50, although shorter and longer forms of limited overs cricket have been played.

One-day cricket is popular with spectators as it can encourage aggressive, risky, entertaining batting, often results in cliffhanger endings, and ensures that a spectator can watch an entire match without committing to five days of continuous attendance.


Structure

Each team bats only once, and each innings is limited to a set number of overs, usually fifty in a One Day International and between forty and sixty in a List A. List A is a classification of the limited-overs (one-day) form of cricket, technically as the domestic level.

Despite its name, important one-day matches, international and domestic, often have two days set aside, the second day being a "reserve" day to allow more chance of the game being completed if a result is not possible on the first day (for instance if play is prevented or interrupted by rain).

Bowling restrictions

As mentioned above, in almost all competitive one-day games, a restriction is placed on the number of overs that may be bowled by any one bowler. This is to prevent a side playing two top-class bowlers with extremely good stamina who can bowl throughout their opponents' innings. The usual limitation is set so that a side must include at least five players who bowl. For example, the usual limit for twenty-over cricket is four overs per bowler, for forty-over cricket eight per bowler and for fifty-over cricket ten per bowler. There are exceptions: Pro Cricket in the United States restricted bowlers to five overs each, thus leaving a side requiring only four bowlers.