What is fritz in the game of cricket?

One of the ways in which a batter can be dismissed in cricket is called stumping. A stumping is inflicted by the wicket-keeper, who upon collecting the ball from the bowler (most often a spinner) dislodges the bails when the batter is out of the popping crease.

Stumping demands the wicket-keeper to be extremely sharp and spontaneous. Law 39 of the MCC’s Laws of Cricket is dedicated to stumping. A subsection of the law (39.2) states that a batter is stumped if they are out of their crease and the ball has dislodged the bails by either kicking the ball towards the stumps or by deflecting from any part of the keeper’s body. When the latter occurs, it is called Fritz.

Fritz means something is defective. However, the etymology of this word in cricket is not known. Fritz is a lucky dismissal from the fielding side’s point of view. The moment of hitting the keeper’s pads and going on to hit the stumps is rarely a planned event.

A notable instance of Fritz is the one where Anil Kumble took the wicket of Adam Gilchrist via stumping. The wicket-keeper was Parthiv Patel. Patel dropped the incoming ball from the gloves that hit his pads and eventually hit the stumps. Since Gilchrist was outside the crease, he was declared out.
The biggest question surrounding Fritz in cricket is how the word itself got its place in the books. Historians are also unaware if there ever was a cricketer who went by that name.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *