from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun (Cricket) a cricket ball bowled as if to break one way that actually breaks in the opposite way.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun cricket A ball, bowled by a leg break bowler, that spins from off to leg (to a right-handed batsman), unlike a normal leg-break delivery.
  • adjective Of the eyes, bulging.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun a cricket ball bowled as if to break one way that actually breaks in the opposite way


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

The etymology is uncertain but it is linked to Bernard Bosanquet, who developed such a delivery. It may be important that the word was first reported during one of his New Zealand matches.


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  • It's not just buildings by such textbook giants as Frank Lloyd Wright that seem precious — there are movements to save old neon-lit motels and those over-the-top "googly" - style fast-food joints from the '50s.

    Love the New Skin You’re In 2008

  • * A googly is a kind of pitch similar to a baseball pitch or a bowling throw in the game cricket; a wicked googly would be a really good pitch.

    Indian Premier League bowls wicked googly* to the world on YouTube 2010

  • A googly is a ball delivered by a bowler that looks as if it ought to break from left to right across the bat of a right-handed batsman.

    VERBATIM: The Language Quarterly Vol XII No 1 1985

  • But the most extraordinary thing about his success here is that Mr. Swann is basically an ordinary player: There ' s nothing flashy about him, he doesn ' t bowl a " googly " or a " doosra " or any of the other mystery deliveries that can leave batsmen looking bewildered.

    Swann on Song for England Jonathan Clegg 2010

  • Lastly, I put drops of Wilton black icing gel atop the marshmallows in a "googly" kind of way.

    Archive 2008-11-01 Melissa 2008

  • Lastly, I put drops of Wilton black icing gel atop the marshmallows in a "googly" kind of way.


  • Back in the late 1970's (maybe early 1980's) there was a brand of Peanut Butter that had the Jelly swirled into it (predating the Smuckers version) and it was called "googly" or something.

    Comic Book Urban Legends Revealed #155 | Comics Should Be Good! @ Comic Book Resources 2008

  • For 'googly' is nothing but a little initiation test, a code-word given at the start of the interview to see if you know the countersign and can be let onto the premesis of actual question no pun intended.

    What did the Romans wear under their togas? 2006

  • But you clearly believe, bizarrely, that the 'googly' is something which equalizes the field - when it is the 'googly' that in fact disguises a simple question in condensed, oblique language, and therefore is only a further advantage thrust at the well-prepared girl or boy who has had such strangely codified questions fired at them for months, who know 'googlies.'

    What did the Romans wear under their togas? 2006

  • A 'googly'finds out those with a pedestrian, but well drilled, brain.

    What did the Romans wear under their togas? 2006


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  • Cricket jargon - a ball which turns in the opposite direction to that expected. Typically, a googly is bowled by a leg-spinner who flips the ball over the back of his wrist at the point of release.

    November 30, 2007

  • “As Google defines it, landing page quality includes a series of attributes — loading speed, user friendliness, relevancy, originality and dozens of other characteristics — that it deems appropriately 'googly.'�?

    The New York Times, Stuck in Google’s Doghouse, by Joe Nocera, September 12, 2008

    September 13, 2008

  • i've read the article, which is really interesting. google and antitrust...

    September 13, 2008

  • See also googly eyes.

    September 14, 2008

  • Darren Gough now keeps calling this a 'google'. Why? Search me.

    April 22, 2009

  • "Unsurprisingly, the audiences got longer and more ragged, with a growing number of her loving subjects going away regretting that they had not performed well and feeling, too, that the monarch had somehow bowled them a googly."

    The Uncommon Reader by Alan Bennett, p 41 of the FSG hardcover edition

    October 13, 2012

  • It's good to have an excuse to allow a few cricket terms an innings. A googly bowled (not thrown, please) by a left-handed bowler is known as a Chinaman while, geographically speaking, a ball pitched by the bowler so accurately that the batsman cannot easily move backwards or forwards to take it in the middle of the bat, instead hitting it with the bottom, is a Yorker; such a ball usually lands on the point along the crease where the bottom of the bat rests when the batsman takes guard, known as the block hole. It is entirely possible, since Brighton (the setting of Greene's Brighton Rock) has a cricket field where Sussex play, that Graham Greene was inspired to entitle his novel, The Third Man, by the fielding position of that name. Lately, with the wearing by some fielders of helmets with visors, the fielder in the position of silly mid-on has moved so close to the batsman that the position could more accurately be renamed suicidal mid-on. Hit for six, which relates to a stroke by which the batsman hits the ball clean over the boundary, scoring six runs, is a common expression derived from the game. Forward and backward (of the crease) are used to nuance the description of the fielding position point and do not imply an evaluation of the player's intelligence. Finally, the popping crease is a line which the rear foot of the bowler must not cross before he releases the ball. It does not go pop like the legendary pea pod, nor for that matter like the weasel. However, violation of the rule about not crossing the popping crease with his trailing foot will immediately provoke the umpire to announce the bowler's misdemeanour by the call: No ball!

    May 1, 2013