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you say baseball I say….cricket?

Apparently my city is a testing ground for Cricket. They’ve brought us the Stanford 20/20 Cricket Tournament through the technology of Cable TV. This Stanford guy (Texan - as all good crazy things come out of Texas) is investing a lot of money here during this month-long push with viewing parties, training classes and all manner of Cricket frivolity all over community centers, pubs, restaurants and clubs in our fair American town. And because I’m interested in all things related to my town and all things that AREN’T American, I’m trying to learn the game. All I have to say is WHAT THE HELL?! I think baseball is boring so maybe the sheer mad complexity of this game will keep me interested. We have a game on right now, it’s fascinating, in a sort of “gawking at the pile up on the freeway” sort of way.

The website I linked to above has some cricket basics but I think I need a more extensive Cricket for dummies or something. Really what I need is as my husband said - someone to watch the game with who can walk us through it. Anyone here into Cricket?


  1. Kate — February 1, 2008 #

    Hi Mak,
    I wouldn’t worry too much….I’m English and I haven’t got the foggiest idea how to play cricket. How funny.
    Fort Collins…cricket… whatever next..they’ll be showing Carry On films at the local theatre…

    Hope you are well - love the christian feminism blog.

  2. Tia Lynn — February 1, 2008 #

    The only cricket I like is Jiminy. :)

  3. Bec — February 1, 2008 #

    We had the big India/Australia 20/20 game last night. Despite being Aussie I’m still learning the game (due to my big fat cultural gap from living overseas AND coming from a household that was never very facinated by any sport). I can’t vouch for cricket being riveting. 20/20 is good because they’re quicker games, test cricket is oh so slow.

  4. Mak — February 1, 2008 #

    Tia - ROFLOL

    Kate - good hearing from you girlfriend How’s things? As for cricket in FoCo I know right?! I thought that was goofy too… but hey, whatever. I’d actually rather learn Rugby or Lacrosse.

    Bec - yeah 20/20 is quicker….meaning 3 hours! good grief.

  5. Geoff — February 1, 2008 #

    Mak, 3 hours is nothing. You just wait until you’ve sat through a 5-day test match only for the game to end in a draw. THAT’s what cricket’s all about.

    No, seriously, it’s a great game, there’s not a backyard in all of Australia that hasn’t hosted a quick game of cricket. Cricket certainly does poo poos all over baseball! :)

  6. Shauna — February 1, 2008 #

    You should watch Lagaan to get into the cricket spirit! It’s long, predictable, and cheesy, but they frequently break into Bollywood song and dance numbers to interrupt all the cricket playing.

    (By the way, I don’t recommend telling an Aussie and an Indian who are arguing about who has the better national team that you think cricket is a stupid game anyway.)

  7. Mak — February 2, 2008 #

    Geoff - oh my, that’s just wrong hehe

    shauna - hehe..good to know

  8. Bonny — February 2, 2008 #

    A friend of mine went to high school in Australia and played Cricket. She explained the game to me about 12 different ways, but I still didn’t understand it!

  9. Carlos — February 2, 2008 #

    As a kid I grew up in Brazil where “Futebol” is the passion, however for other fun games, we’d played, what I latter learned, was a very much shortned version of cricket. Our dirt street was a dead end so not trafic; it was our soccer field and “Cricket” pitch(?), and other games, including roller bearing which were wheels on a flat wooden planks which we raced down the hard dirt street..

    Our version of cricket was 2×2 boys teams; we’d draw 2 circles(2-3 ft diameter) on the dirt about 10-15 feet apart, put a 3×6″ sitcks together like a TP. Each circle would have a bowler and a batter( using old broom sticks); the ball was a soft rubber ball about 2/3 the size of a beiseball (we’d frequently tear them up as they could not take much of the abuse) the cheapest we could buy with our meager money we got scrounging scrap tin,copper, brass, etc. and selling to the “scrap” man who would come by periodically.

    The bowlers would throw/rolled the ball across to the other circle with the obective of knocking down the sticks. The batter would try to protect and bat the ball away; if we hit the ball past the bowler, the batters would run acoss to the other circle and that would count as a point. If the bowlers would get to the circle before the batter, he would try to knock the sticks down; the batter would have to get there before and place the tip of the bat in the circle and would make it safe.

    If the ball was batted in the air and the bowlers caught it or the bowlers would knoct the sticks down, then the batters would become bowlers and vice versa; we’play up to 24 points - don’t ask why - maybe it was to let other two men teams play - we had about 10 kids on or street.

    Sorry for this long comment; but this my simple vesion/understanding of the game I played as a kid in the streets of my neighbrhood in Sao Paulo.

    time for the afternoon tea break :-)


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  11. Paul — February 7, 2008 #

    ah the thwack of leather on willow, we’ll make you civilised yet ;)

  12. steve mcalpine — February 18, 2008 #

    Let me tell you Mak that Cricket is the best game in the world. That 20/20 version you talk about is what we call a hit and giggle game - not worth the money for entry. The real game is Test Match cricket played between two countries over FIVE, yes FIVE, days. It is brilliant, brutal, enthralling, and about a billion Indians will walk over their own mother to watch it. We Aussies are addicted to it and generally think baseball to be a “poofter’s” sport in which you can catch the ball with a mitt (only one player has protective gloves in the field in cricket, the rest have to catch with their bare hands). So I say go and watch a game - be bemused, be amused, be bored, but watch it anyway and tell us what you think!

  13. Mak — February 18, 2008 #

    steve - unfortunately, there still isn’t any cricket here to watch - just the 20/20 tournament on tv. Have you ever been a promotional agent for cricket? if not you should, you have clear passion and an ability to communicate it hehe

  14. steve mcalpine — February 18, 2008 #

    My passion for it and ability to promote it are inversely proportionate to my skills in playing it!

  15. michael — February 24, 2008 #

    Steve’s right in that real cricket takes days, rather like the baseball series, but also, like he said, most elsewhere consider baseball to be more of a girls sport, fair or not, as it’s too much like ‘roounders.’

    Personally, I hated cricket. I had to play it for my school every summer. It was sooooo slow and boring and we even had to wear these thick knitted white cricket sweaters over our white buttoned up shirts and white trousers and so on which made it that much hotter when the sun would sometimes blare down. But then again, it beat ’soccer’ which I hated even more! At least we could get outside on lazy summer afternoons. It also always seemed inane to me that someone way back when invented the rules about bowling with keeping one’s arm pretty straight and thereby weirdly contorting one’s body just to release the ball.

    I can’t though figure out why people here have such a hard time understanding it–it’s no harder than American football with all it’s stops and starts. Really, when boiled down to the simple rules, it’s like football here–pretty basic.

    I’d say the best thing about cricket is that from it we get the term “sticky wicket” which can come rther in handy on some occassions. Thre you go, that’s my bias.

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