3 Types of Cricket Balls Used in International Cricket

3 Types of Cricket Balls Used in International Cricket

Believed to have begun as early as the 13th century, cricket dominates the world of sports with its charm and charisma. When we look at the rich history of cricket, we see some major advancements in cricket equipment, including the cricket balls. Alongside the evolution in modern-day bats, cricket balls have also changed in terms of color and performance. Let us discover the different types of cricket balls in the spirit of the ongoing World Cup!

1. The Traditional Red Ball

The red cricket ball is the oldest and most traditional type of ball used in cricket. It is used in first-class matches and traditional day Test matches. The traditional red ball is perfect for day matches but poses difficulty during night matches. The manufacturing of the traditional red balls varies depending on regions. These include Duke balls, Kookaburra balls, and SG balls.


i. Duke Ball

The Duke ball is entirely handcrafted. They stand out for their rich color and top-notch quality. What makes them special is their ability to maintain their excellence for a longer time, supporting seam movement for around 50 to 56 overs and delivering impressive swing. Many different types of cricket matches use these popular balls, especially in England.


ii. Kookaburra Ball

Kookaburra balls are machine stitched and are renowned worldwide. First manufactured in Australia in 1890, Kookaburra balls usually weigh around 156 g. Moreover, they provide less seam movement but can swing for up to 30 overs. Hence, it is clear that Kookaburra balls are not a great companion to spin bowlers as the ball’s performance declines overtime. Therefore, it gets easier to play the ball on the field as the match progresses.


iii. SG Ball

An exciting reveal about Sanspareils Greenlands (SG) balls is that they were first established in Pakistan. The SG balls are made by a thicker thread and have a wider seam. Therefore, they offer a mighty benefit to spin bowlers. Moreover, they provide an exceptional reverse swing even after 40 years.

2. White Ball: A Companion of The Night

The white cricket ball was first introduced in 1977 for day-night limited-overs cricket matches. Weighing around 156 g, the white ball is mostly used in T20s and ODIs. Interestingly, it was initially developed to enhance visibility under the floodlights and colored clothing at night.


The red balls are harder to spot under the lights whereas, white balls offer great visibility under different light conditions. The extra coat of white polish on them pops out in order to make the surface shinier, and therefore increases the visibility. The shine also makes the surface smoother and harder so, decreases the resistance. Hence, the white ball swings more in comparison to the traditional red ball. However, the white ball is harder to play as it deteriorates rather quickly in long term matches. 

3. Pink Ball

The pink cricket ball emerged in the early 2000s for day-night first-class and Test matches. Pink balls came into play after the red and the white balls caused visibility issues.

The red cricket ball was unable to prove its clarity under the flood-lights at night, whereas the white ball clashed with the cricketers’ white attires during the Test matches. Therefore, the pink ball came into existence as it allows increased visibility and durability, particularly in day-night Test cricket.

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Manufacturers such as Kookaburra and Dukes produce pink balls, while SG manufactures pink balls for Pakistan and India. While still relatively new, pink balls are famous in the day-night Test matches which offer great visibility and clarity. Hence, adding an intriguing dimension to cricket matches.

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In summary, the types of cricket balls have evolved over time, with each color serving specific purposes. Each type of the ball is tailored for different formats and playing conditions. They all carry distinct characteristics in order to make your cricket game maintain its charm. Thus, it is important to choose the one which matches your cricket requirements the best.

What do you think about the different types of cricket balls? Which one do you use while playing cricket? Tell us in the comments below!

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