It is permitted for a batsman to reverse or switch his bat from right to left or vice versa for getting runs.

If they missed the ball means, what is the rule there regarding wide?

To be more clear, for ex,

If a batsman faces the ball with RHB and switch his bat to LHB and missed the ball, now the ball went outside the leg stump according to LHB, is this a wide ball?

2 Answers 2


Good question. A similar query applies to LBW. Does the off and leg sides get switched in regards to applying the different rules on LBW for the different sides? It takes some digging through different parts of the Laws of Cricket to get a answer.

The only thing I can find the defines the moment in time that the off and leg sides get defined is in Law 36 regarding LBW. It states

  1. Off side of wicket The off side of the striker’s wicket shall be determined by the striker’s stance at the moment the ball comes into play for that delivery.

So when does the ball come into play? If we go to Law 23 we find

  1. Ball ceases to be dead The ball ceases to be dead - that is, it comes into play - when the bowler starts his run up or, if he has no run up, his bowling action.

This means that the original definition of the sides stand, so this won't be called a wide. Note that there may be some additional clarifications about this in the playing conditions, but I couldn't find anything.

I know that in the case of LBW this is true; the original sides stand. I know this because many people have suggested, correctly in my view, that the laws should be changed on this point.


This is super old now, but I figured I'd chip in. There are two different questions here in the context of a switch hit:

1) What about wides?

2) What about LBWs?

For the purposes of wides, the switch-hitting striker sacrifices the benefit of the leg side bowling limit. In other words, he effectively has two off sides for the purposes of calling wides. This is established, IIRC, in the playing conditions for limited overs games.

(Edit: I recalled incorrectly - it's just the way Law 25 is applied in that context:

The umpire shall not adjudge a delivery as being a Wide,

(a) if the striker, by moving,

either (i) causes the ball to pass wide of him, as defined in 1(b) above...

For the purposes of LBWs, the off and leg sides are determined by the striker's stance at the moment the ball becomes live, as noted in the previous answer. The switch hit does not affect that, so a ball which pitches outside his now off-stump, in a switched stance, would be deemed to have pitched outside leg and therefore be ineligible for LBW.

It's also worth noting that a switch hit is determined by the striker's GRIP, not by his feet. A reverse sweep is not a switch hit.

Also worth noting that the striker can't change back ito wides. Once he's given up that leg side protection, changing back to his original stance will not get it back - it's two off sides for the purpose of wides, and will remain that way until the delivery is complete.

  • I don't see anything in the ICC Playing Conditions about this. Could you provide a direct quote?
    – Philip Kendall
    Commented Sep 7, 2015 at 10:19
  • (Ugh, struggling with markdown...) Nope, you are correct. It's just the way we're told to apply Law 25 in that limited overs context. Definitely not in the PC.
    – zaump
    Commented Sep 7, 2015 at 10:39

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