What Is A Bye In Cricket: Complete Guide

Cricket fans are often seen troubling their minds with questions like what is a bye in cricket. Bye is a signal given by the umpire when a batsman fails to make any type of contact with the ball (either with the bat or body) and still takes a run as the wicketkeeper fumbles and fails while collecting the ball.

When both batsman and wicketkeeper miss the ball, and the batsman gets runs by either running or the ball reaching the boundary line, the umpire signals these runs as Bye runs.  

Generally, people confuse Bye with leg-bye runs, which have similar rules. Leg-bye is a special condition of Bye, where players take runs after making contact with the ball and their body. Additionally, there are some key differences between these two. Here’s the complete information about Bye and its rules in cricket. 

What are the Rules of leg bye?

The rules regarding byes and leg byes are quite identical. The umpire signals a leg-by-run when there is no contact of the ball with the bat, but the ball touches the body of the batsman playing it.

Now, the batsman can take singles and doubles after the ball hits them and the wicketkeeper fails to collect it. It is also possible to get a boundary in the form of leg-bye if the ball passes the wicketkeeper and races away to the fence. 

All the runs scored by the batting side on this type of Bye will be credited to the ‘leg byes’ column under extra runs scored. The decision regarding byes and leg-byes are made by on-field umpire, and they look for these two points while declaring leg-bye:

  • The batsman attempted to hit the ball and missed it
  • The batsman was trying to defend against the ball but got hit on the body

There is also an option of declaring the ball as a dead ball after it hits the batsman. But, like others, this decision remains in the hands of the on-field umpire. Since these leg-byes are added to extras, they are not counted under the bowler’s tab. 

What is the Umpire’s Signal for a Bye?

what is a bye in cricket

In cricket, whenever an umpire has to make any decision, there is a specified signal to it. For example, while signaling runs scored as Byes, the umpire raises one hand with an open palm over his head to signal Byes.

There are no specific rules regarding which arm to raise, and the umpire can choose any arm he feels comfortable with to raise and signal Byes. 

This six might resemble the signal for six too many freshers in cricket. However, the difference between the signals for six and byes is that byes use only a single arm while six is denoted by raising both arms overhead.

These are special cases where both bye runs are scored on no-ball. In such a situation, the umpire first signals for the no-ball, followed by one arm signal for a bye.

Check This: Become Umpire In Cricket

How Many Runs can be Scored on a Bye?

what is a bye in cricket

Bye allows a batsman to score runs by running between the wickets, the ball reaching the boundary line, wide, no-ball, and overthrow. It means many outcomes where the runs scored on a bye can even go higher than six.

For example, if the batsman bowls a no-ball or wide ball and it reaches the fence by missing batsman and wicketkeeper, then the batting team will get five runs as byes. 

Whatever the situation, the maximum number of runs scored on a bye is 8. Let’s understand this situation through an example.

First, a bowler balls a no-ball/ wide ball, and the ball moves towards the fine leg after clipping the batsman’s pads. While the ball was running down the leg, both batsmen completed three runs by running between the wickets. Next, the fielder on fine leg overthrows, and the balls go to the boundary. 

Can a Batsman be given OUT on a Bye?

The umpire can give a batsman OUT in a few cases, even on a Bye. This situation comes when either the batsman gets run-out while taking a run on a bye or he gets stumped by the wicketkeeper. There are many cases where players get run out by the fielder in an attempt to score maximum runs on a bye. 

Another case where a batsman can be given out on a bye is through Obstructing the Field. This is a complicated rule of cricket where the umpire has the authority to declare a batsman out if he tries to obstruct the field during play.

However, Obstructing the Field is not quite common, where run-outs on byes can be easily seen during death overs in the limited format of the game. 

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is the meaning of Bye in cricket?
In cricket, Bye means the batsman has made no contact with the ball but still manages to collect some runs by running between the wickets. These bye-runs are always added as extras. 

2. How many runs is a bye in cricket?
Bye-runs depend upon the match situation and how fast the running between the wicket. The maximum runs any batsman can get from byes are 8.  

3. What is the difference between a bye and a leg bye in cricket?
Bye is signaled when there is no contact of the ball with the bat or the batsman’s body. On the other hand, if the ball touches any part of the batsman’s body before deflection, then the umpire will signal it as leg bye.

4. Why is a bye called a bye in cricket?
This is because of the resemblance of the signal of Bye with the actual Bye (farewell). The signal for Bye includes raising one hand over the head and showing an open palm.

5. When can an umpire declare Bye?
The umpire signals bye when he feels that the batsman has made no contact with the ball and still completed a run by running between the wickets.

6. How do you signal a bye?
The umpire signals a Bye by raising one head over his head with an open palm. It depends on the umpire to choose any arm to signal a bye.


Leave a Comment