A coin toss is an age-old tradition in the game of cricket. It has remained unchanged since the first laws of the game were laid down by the Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) in 1744. The coin toss consists of the home captain flipping a coin in the air and the visiting captain predicting the result, with the winning captain then choosing what his team will do — bat or bowl first.
The match referee generally conducts the toss in the presence of both the captains on the pitch.
When does a coin toss happen? Well! It is the first step of a cricket match. A coin toss generally happens half an hour before the scheduled start of play. This is also when both the teams announce the playing XI for the game.
WHO CAN PREDICT THE TOSS?
Predicting the toss beforehand is nearly impossible as both the teams have a 50 percent chance of winning it and it is based on pure luck. A coin has two sides — heads and tails — with the coin set to land on either of the two sides. The match referee announces the winner of the toss. The winning captain has to announce whether they will bat or bowl – the captain, coaches and managers usually take this decision before the toss – it depends on the conditions of the pitch, weather, etc.
WHAT KIND OF COINS ARE USED?
There is no specific type of coin used per se. It’s generally a coin from the host nation and the match referee explains both sides of the coin to both the captains before flipping the coin.
In the Indian Premier League (IPL), they use specially gold minted coins with the IPL logo and the match details for every match.
HOW IMPORTANT IS THE TOSS?
The toss, as mentioned before, is perhaps the most important aspect of the game as teams have won and lost games based on the coin toss. A team can choose to make the most of a situation and fresh pitch. They can put the opposition under pressure by putting up huge runs when batting or taking early wickets when bowling.
BETTING AGAINST TOSS
The best way to bet against a toss isn’t there yet as it is very difficult to comprehend but betting sites could incorporate a toss result by allowing users to choose what the winning side will do after winning the toss.
BETTING ON TOSS RESULT
Cricket is the most popular sport in India and therefore, bookmakers draw odds on who will win the toss? ‘To win the toss’ is one of the most popular online cricket betting markets in the country. The odds across most platforms are 1.80 to 1.90 most of the time and it’s almost the same always for both sides as the prediction over here is based on pure luck and there are only two possibilities.
So, when planning your team, the coin toss will play an important factor. It can impact a player’s game and you need to choose your playing XI carefully.