Explaining Cricket

Cricket: Only the British could invent a sport that lasts for four days and ends in a draw…

Five days for Tests. :beers:

Although personally, I’d like to see a return to the old Timeless Test format for a couple of matches every year. There was one that went ten days and still ended in a draw when England had to leave to catch the boat home.


Which always brought to mind John Clarke’s reinterpretation of Robert Browning:

Oh to be in April now that England’s here…


You’re drinking the wrong beer, or forgetting to “get the flu” and take a few days off work, or your friends aren’t very fun.

The joy of cricket is the drinking, the company and the fact you don’t have to pay very much attention.


The two links within the article itself are still broken. An extra double quotation mark at the end of each link that is causing 404s.

Once attended a match in Jamaica. After eight hours & numerous Red Stripes, still knew absolutely nothing about cricket, but couldn’t have cared less.


The US has enough people from India, Pakistan, the UK and the Caribbean to field a competitive cricket team.

I only said the permalink was fixed.
No pleasing some people. The other ones are fixed now too. Happy? :wink:

My happiness is always highest after receiving friendly snark. :slight_smile:

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Luckily 1.85 billion people have managed to understand the sport. The cricket ‘World Cup’, amazingly, features teams from many countries around the ‘world’ and not just America and a team from Canada.

Cricket you say?
(The good thing about Red Stripe is you can drink it pretty much all day without really getting drunk)

Maybe you just need a dreadlock holiday?

Is cricket actually played to a significant extent in any country that does not have English as a national language?

I also call BS on that 1.85 billion figure. That’s a quarter of the world population, and it’s three times the viewership of a football(soccer) world championship final. Something does not add up here.

My school had football, hockey, rugby union (but not league, which I thought was odd for somewhere in the North of England) and basketball. I think the most of the girls played netball instead of rugby. In Summer we had cricket, tennis and athletics.

The school could do all that because the playing fields were on a flood plain which couldn’t be built on.

Major Cricket playing nations by population:

India: 1,268,410,000
Pakistan: 189,260,000
Bangladesh: 158,009,000
UK: 64,105,654
South Africa: 54,002,000
West Indies 39,170,000
Australia: 23,779,800
Sri Lanka: 20,359,439
Zimbabwe : 13,061,239
New Zealand : 4,568,930

Plus all the countries like Ireland, UAE, Afghanistan, Papua New Guinea, Canada, the US where there is some minor support (the last game I went to was an international game in Florida)…

i.e. it’s India - and as I said before, it’s population, not viewing figures.

Edit: knew I’d forget someone. The Netherlands have a good side, too.

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Competitive? Not if you put people from the UK in it, it won’t be.

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I thought that the standard description was baseball on Quaaludes…

Thanks for the info.
So there is indeed a country where English is not an official language where cricket is popular (Sri Lanka). But at least it’s a Commonwealth nation.

Let’s return to the first sentence of the blog entry:

“Springtime turns American minds to college basketball, but the world is not watching. No, everyone else is fixated on the Cricket World Cup, going on right now, which brags a TV viewership of 1.85 billion.”

Of course, we all like to make fun of Americans when they confuse the United States with “the whole world”. We love telling them “Hey, this world is bigger than America, there are things outside America that matter in this world.”
But it’s just sad when it’s immediately followed by “The Commonwealth is the whole world. Nothing outside the Commonwealth matters.”

I’m sure cricket is a fine sport. I especially like the idea of a sport with two-day matches. But, cricket is a complete mystery to at least five billion people on this planet. Complete mystery as in “that even more incomprehensible version of baseball they play in some former British colonies”.

The US does have a team; they played in at least one of the T20 cups; all expatriate West Indians, as far as I could tell. Similarly for Canada.

To be fair, a good percentage of India will be watching (as well as lots of NRIs). India is probably the most cricket-mad country.