In cricket, the term 'strike rate' refers to a statistical measure used to evaluate the performance of both batters and bowlers.
A batter's strike rate is defined as the average number of runs scored per 100 balls faced. A higher strike rate indicates that a batter is more effective at scoring quickly.
Calculating a batter's strike rate involves dividing the number of runs scored by the number of balls faced, then multiplying by 100.
The importance of a batter's strike rate varies depending on the format of the game.
In Test cricket, where the competition between bat and ball is intense and often a game of patience, a batter's strike rate is of secondary importance to their ability to score runs without getting out. A good strike rate in Test cricket is generally over 40.
In contrast, in limited overs cricket such as One Day Internationals (ODIs) and Twenty20 (T20), the strike rate is of considerably more importance due to the limited number of balls each team faces in an innings. In these formats, the faster a batter scores, the more runs the team can accumulate. Strike rates of over 150 are becoming common in T20 cricket.
The highest strike rate in cricket history is calculated by taking the number of runs scored per 100 balls faced. For example, if Sachin Tendulkar makes 68 runs in 34 balls, his strike rate would be (68/34)*100 = 200.
For bowlers, the strike rate is the average number of balls bowled per wicket. The lower the strike rate, the more effective a bowler is at taking wickets quickly.
Unlike batting strike rates, bowling strike rates are arguably of more importance in Test cricket than in One-day Internationals. This is because the primary goal of a bowler in Test cricket is to take wickets. In contrast, it is often sufficient to bowl economically in a one-day match - giving away as few runs as possible even if this means taking fewer wickets.