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What Exactly Is The Hundred?
What Exactly Is The Hundred? Image Source: The Hundred

The Hundred is a new professional franchise 100 ball cricket competition that started on July 21 in England. The competition will take place over 5 weeks between 21 July and 21 August across major cities in England and Wales.

The tournament dates have been planned in a way to ensure that the competition takes place during the school summer holidays in the UK.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the tournament had to be delayed for over a year. Run by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), the tournament will take place for the first time in 2021.

In this newly formatted competition, eight city-based women’s and men’s teams are competing for 5 weeks.

The eight teams along with their home grounds are as follows:

  • Birmingham Phoenix (Edgbaston)
  • London Spirit (Lord's)
  • Manchester Originals (Emirates Old Trafford)
  • Northern Superchargers (Emerald Headingley)
  • Oval Invincibles (Kia Oval)
  • Southern Brave (Ageas Bowl)
  • Trent Rockets (Trent Bridge)
  • Welsh Fire (Sophia Gardens)

Each team boasts of high-quality players from all over the world. A draft took place on 23rd February 2021 to allocate the players to each men’s team.

About The Format

The ECB introduced a new format of 100 ball cricket to attract younger and more diverse crowds. Just like the ECB introduced a completely new format in the form of T-20 cricket, the Hundred seems to be a mouth-watering affair, especially for the younger audience.

All the matches will take place as back-to-back doubleheaders. These matches will take place on the same day and at the same venue for both men and women. By buying a ticket for a day, the audience can gain access to both games.

In total, there will be 32 matches in the tournament with each team playing 4 matches at home and 4 matches away. Each team will play one match against every other side and a bonus match against their nearest regional rivals.

What’s interesting is that the tournament gives equal weight to both men’s and women’s categories. The best part is that even the prize money is the same. This is extremely refreshing to see and a positive step towards gender equality in Cricket.

The format of each game is as follows:

  • 100 balls per innings
  • The ends will be changed after 10 balls
  • A bowler can deliver with 5 or 10 consecutive balls
  • Each bowler gets a maximum of 20 balls per game
  • The bowling side will get a strategic time out of 2.5 minutes
  • The powerplay will be of 25 balls
  • During the powerplay, two fielders will be allowed outside the initial 30-yard circle
  • Teams have the option of calling for time-outs
  • No balls will be worth two runs
  • The non-striker will have to return to their original end after a caught dismissal

It is expected that each match will last around two and a half hours. Each game will be shown by BBC through free-to-air broadcasts. Moreover, all the women’s matches and some of the men’s matches will be streamed on Sky Sports’ Youtube channel for free.

Closing Thoughts

The ECB’s decision to create an entirely new format of Cricket has split opinion. The traditionalists in the country who prefer the county cricket format believe that Cricket as a sport should not change to reach new audiences.

However, we believe that the Hundred will offer the world of Cricket something new and refreshing. More importantly, it will attract a completely new audience to the game, helping expand the sport’s reach even further.

So, what do you think about the new format?

Comment down below and let us know your opinion!