how bowling speed is measured in cricket

How Bowling Speed Is Measured In Cricket Match

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Cricket is the most famous game in the modern era. After football cricket is the second most popular game in the world. When we talk about cricket, three things come into mind bowling, batting, and fielding. All three department of this game has equal priority. When we saw a cricket match on TV, after every ball the speed of the ball is a popup on the screen. Sometime we may have the common query like how bowling speed is measured in cricket? What are the methods in cricket to measuring speed?

Nowadays cricket match telecast uses a lot of technology. The advanced cameras and hi-tech devices conduct the game more accurately. It also multiplies the viewer experience.

In the history of cricket, we can find some fastest bowlers. Morne Morkel, Mitchell Starc, Mitchell Johnson, Shoaib Akhtar, Brett are some fastest bowler of all time. In this article, I am going to discuss the mechanism and process of measuring the bowling speed in cricket. So let’s get started.

How bowling speed is measured

There is two method to measure the bowling speed.

  • Radar Gun
  • Hawk-Eye

Radar Gun

Are you scared of hearing the word gun? Well, feel safe it doesn’t fire any bullet.

This technology is not new. It has been using for measuring the speed of the car. Mainly Police uses this Radar gun to measure the speed of moving vehicle.

How Radar Gun works

This device consists of a transmitter and receiver. Radar Gun sends a radio wave. If the wave hits any object in the path it reflects back. In cricket, it is a cricket ball that comes in the path of the emitted radio wave. So radio wave reflects back and receives by the receiver. Then the bowling speed is calculated by using a principle called Doppler Effect.

In most of the cricket match, the Radar Gun installs on the side screen. There is no effect on the Gun if the bowler changes the end of their bowling.

Advantages of Radar Gun

  • Exact speed is determined with the help of a radar gun
  • It measures the speed instantly

Limitations of Radar Gun

  • It measures the speed of the ball when bowler just releases the ball. But it is not the actual speed of the ball because when the ball pitches in the ground and reach batsman the speed decreases. This is because some external factors like air resistance restrict the speed of the ball.
  • The air registrant can also reduce the speed of the ball when it is traveling. So the speed is not accurate.


Hawk-eye is a popular sports technology. It has been using in various sports like tennis, football, cricket etc. Actually, this technology was made for tracking the missile path and brain surgery.

Paul Hawkins developed this technology in the UK. In 2001 the system was first implemented for television purpose in cricket.

How does Hawk-Eye work

The Hawk Eye technology system consists of six high-performance cameras. Normally the Hawk-Eye cameras are positioned on the underside of the stadium roof. The cameras are installs at a different angle so that it can track the ball from a different angle.

This system starts tracking the ball path when the bowler releases the ball from hand and keep tracking until the ball goes dead. This system collects the data from 6 cameras. Then this system makes a 3D image from the collected data.

Hawk-Eye gives a clear representation to the viewers of the direction and length of the ball travel towards the stumps. This technology also helps 3rd umpire to check whether the ball is in the line of the stump when it hit the pads of the batsman or not. This technology plays a vital role in the DRS LBW review.

Advantages of Hawk Eye

There are some advantages of the Hawk-Eye system

  • It measures the accurate speed of the ball
  • The system also measures the direction and swing of the ball

Limitations of Hawk Eye

Although this is an advanced system, it is not bullet-proof. There are some limitations.

  • The Hawk-Eye is not infallible. It is accurate within 3.6 millimeters of its range.


We started our discussion from how bowling speed is measured in cricket? A wide range of technology has been using in cricket to make it more accurate and. It also gives the viewer a clear representation of the ball path. However many time this system comes under controversy. Many sports exports complained about the system. Many cricket commentators expressed their doubts about the bowling speeds of many bowlers in the past. This has a controversial history in the past. Beyond of these many controversies the technologies are still using for measuring the bowling speed. Because there is no better technology than this for measuring bowling speed.

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