I was watching the recent Ashes Series between Australia and English when the umpire Billy Bowden actually allowed an extra ball to be bowled in an over. Even though this was counted (I don't think any runs were scored), I would have thought that it would not be considered a legal delivery, and if a batsman actually got out should they be able to challenge this?

1 Answer 1


Yes, the 7th ball stands as a legitimate ball when an umpire miscounts, and so a batsman can be dismissed. This is covered in Law 22.5:

22.5. Umpire miscounting

(a) If the umpire miscounts the number of valid balls, the over as counted by the umpire shall stand.

(b) If, having miscounted, the umpire allows an over to continue after 6 valid balls have been bowled, he may subsequently call Over as the ball becomes dead after any delivery, even if that delivery is not a valid ball.

The batsman may not challenge after being given out, regardless of which ball it is. That is regarded as dissent. See Law 42.18. In such cases, a player should be reported.

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    This is correct. Note as a side point also that under 22.5(b), if the 7th ball is a wide or no ball, and the umpire realises that he has miscounted before the replacement valid delivery is bowled, he should call over immediately. Therefore in such a situation a batsman could be out, say, stumped, off the 7th delivery, but there would be no need for another valid delivery to complete the over.
    – Spinner
    Dec 22, 2013 at 16:35
  • What if the batsman reviews? What does the third umpire do then? Dec 23, 2013 at 23:15
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    Once the ball is bowled, it counts. So in a review, the third umpire must ignore the fact that it is the 7th ball. However, he would probably advise the on-field umpire of the fact so he could call over immediately. Dec 24, 2013 at 5:39
  • Surely there would be an issue in a limited overs match or test cricket match if an extra delivery is counted and the batting team wins the match? Jan 19, 2014 at 7:10
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    In professional cricket or where there is a match referee/3rd umpire it will almost always be communicated to the on field umpires and they will call over before the 7th ball. The law is incredibly clear that if a miscount has happened nothing will be changed
    – Ben Whyall
    Jun 6, 2020 at 19:28

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