Tri-Cities Voice Newspaper - What's Happening - Fremont, Union City, Newark California

August 2, 2005 > Having a ball

Having a ball

by Nitasha Sharma

The Tri-Cities are being charmed by the venerable sport of cricket. The game, somewhat similar to baseball, is slowly gaining a fan base in the community.

Although most agree that the sport originated in either the India/Pakistan region or England, the true origin of cricket is unknown. It is commonly believed that the game began as a diversion, played by shepherds on sheep-grazing fields. One shepherd would defend one of the wicket-gates in a paddock fence (the reference to a "wicket" being suggestive here) from being hit by stones thrown by another shepherd, using his crook to try to deflect the stones away.

There are references in writing and pictures of several stick and stone games with some resemblance to cricket, played as early as 1300. In the 15th century, two men were prosecuted for playing the game rather than attending church. In French, criquet refers to the club with which croquet is played. Many sources believe that croquet and cricket had the same origin. In Flemish, krickstoel is synonymous to the stools which people kneel on at church. These stools are similar to the two stumps used to play early games of cricket.

Cricket involves two teams of 11 players each who compete on a field called a pitch. As in baseball, there are batters and pitchers (bowlers). A specialized player, the wicket-keeper, protects the center of the pitch, a 22-yard long strip of grass called the wicket. There are three stumps, or sticks, placed upright at each end of the wicket separated by no more than the length of the diameter of a cricket ball. On top of each cluster of stumps are placed two smaller sticks. A crease, or a chalk outline, is drawn in front of each set of stumps.

The object of the game is to score as many runs as possible before being dismissed by the opposing team. Runs are scored in several ways. For example, if a batting pair is able to hit the ball between the wickets after the ball is bowled (pitched), a run is scored. Similar to baseball, the teams rotate between batting and bowling after each dismissal. One-day cricket games are limited to 50 "overs," or 6 ball sets. However, many cricket games last for a longer period of time, extending several days. It is common for tea breaks to be taken during a game.

Editor's Note:
After many attempts to describe the intricacies of this game to the uninitiated, we finally found a simple description on the Internet we thought our readers would find amusing.

Some people find the game of cricket difficult to understand.
Perhaps the following will help:

The game is played by two groups.

The first group is in and the second group goes out.

Some of the group which is in, go out.

The group that is out, tries to get the group that is in, out.

When one of the group that is in, is out, he goes in and the next one goes out.

Then when all of the first group (except one) that is in, is out, the second group that is out goes in.

The first group now goes out and tries to get the second group, who now are in, out.

Only when both groups have been in and out twice is there a conclusion.

Source: www.geocities.com/CollegePark/6174/jokes/how2cricket.htm

The Fremont City Council recently considered constructing a cricket field; however, no location or funding has been allocated to the development of the field as of yet.

For those who really want to understand this game, the East Bay Cricket Club will be holding a Cricket Festival at the Seabreeze Park (Dyer St and Carmel Way) in Union City on August 6 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. "The Cricket Festival will be a day of cricket games, food, and fun," said East Bay Cricket Club president, Sonny Chadha.

There are many ways to get involved in playing cricket. To join the East Bay Cricket Club, feel free to contact the President of the club, Sonny Chadha at (510) 304-9056. Cricket matches are held at Kennedy High School (39999 Blacow Rd, Fremont) on Sundays from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Further information on local cricket teams is available at www.bayareacricket.org.

 
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