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Young Xavier's post makes a question pop up in my head - there's a fair herd of Americans who get involved in "more wordly" sports, like there's people on here who are probably fluent with British soccer, and there's probably people here who play rugby, but how come cricket has never taken off in the U.S.?

 

I Googled (I'm not ashamed, everyone has to Google once in a while, it's a good stress-reliever) and it says about 30,000 people in the U.S. follow or play cricket. That's not a bad number, but it's low. I can't find an exact number (hard to Google again once you've Googled once, unless you give it more time), but it's probably a safe bet to say more people in the U.S. are involved with curling.

 

It seems like a natural sport for the States - requires specific equipment, and everyone likes trying to outdo each other in buying specific equipment - "my cricket bat is better than yours" - so I wonder why cricket isn't as popular as, say, rugby?

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I think most of the participants are expats.  Plus the governing body of US Cricket has proven itself time after time to be corrupt, incompetent or both.  Having specific grounds (and putting in cricket pitches) would be more costly, compared to baseball/softball.

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Hadn't thought about that. Rugby's big here in the States, but it's always played on soccer fields, which we have in abundance. I know nothing about the dimensions of a cricket pitch - probably need to do more Googling - but I bet it would be more difficult to convert a soccer field or baseball field to a cricket pitch.

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A proper Test Match, yes, but everyone plays One Day or 20/20 now (which is basically spotfest Cricket, without the psychology or the storytelling).

 

I think it's a bit too similar to Baseball... that and the fact that the most competetive games are called Test Matches*, which probably would sound a bit too much like a practice session to American ears.

 

* They're called Test Matches because a couple of hundred years ago, England were so dominant over Australia that after they won, they'd then give them a rematch with Australia allowed an extra fielder on the pitch. And when England won that, they'd try again with Australia allowed two extra Fielders. Then three, then four, and so on until Australia could win. It was a test to see how many extra players the Aussies needed.

 

When Australia eventually won a game with the sides equal, the England players were so disgusted that they burned the stumps and put the Ashes in a jar. And they play for those Ashes to this day. Which is why the trophy is so small and insignificant looking.

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Guest The Magnificent 7

AxB is right, it's too similar to baseball.

 

There's a cricket invitational at the local baseball complex and it's mostly Indian teams from around the area like Indianapolis, etc.  A couple of the Indian dudes I worked with at my old company played in it every year.  They promote it, but I don't think it gets a ton of fans that aren't from countries where it's popular.

 

Plus you wear pants when you play.  Americans don't like to wear pants when playing sports. 

 

I'm an American.

 

I'm not wearing pants right now. 

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A lot of it is field size. Your standard football field, or baseball stadium is way too small.  (you have to have at LEAST approximately 200 feet from the bowling area to each side, and 450 feet in total)? There's a lot of confusing rules (explain fielding restrictions as a result of things like Bodyline, or god help you, try explaining the LBW rule and its subclauses). And a lot of it is disdain for lengthy sports (before T20 cricket, even the shorter version took 8-10 hours to play). The fact that you could play four-five days and not even have a winner drove win at all cost americans nutty.

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  • 8 months later...

I think another big reason that Cricket isn't big in America is that it's really hard for advertisers to get spots during games.  It would become like NASCAR with all of the teams having so many sponsors on their shirts it would look ridiculous.  There really aren't huge breaks for commercials during Cricket games (even a game like 20/20), and outside of the halftime portion you're not really going to get much time to promote other things. 

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Wow. Zimbabwe had to be thinking upset when they had South Africa down at 83/4.

 

Nope.

 

256 run partnership by David Miller and JP Duminy, and South Africa finish at 339/4.

 

India/Pakistan has started as well.. which is what a couple billion people are watching right now.

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Gotta love the fan contests held, if you're wearing a certain brewery's t-shirt during the tournament and make a clean one handed catch in the crowd, you can win up to $1 million (18,000 for the catch, and then an extra 250K shared for each round New Zealand goes)

 

edit: here's a catch from a previous New Zealand game worth $100,000. From the reaction of the folks around him, you think he'd had promised to share it with the folks around him.

 

Don't think they could do anything like that here in the US, considering the stampedes that happen every time a big homerun is hit, it'd be impossible to verify it was a clean one handed catch (without glove)

 

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Wow. Zimbabwe had to be thinking upset when they had South Africa down at 83/4.

 

Nope.

 

256 run partnership by David Miller and JP Duminy, and South Africa finish at 339/4.

 

India/Pakistan has started as well.. which is what a couple billion people are watching right now.

It's really crazy knowing that India/Pakistan is possibly the most watched sporting event of the year and the amount of people who watched it in America is limited to Pakistani/Indian immigrants and/or sports weirdos with insomnia.

That Zimbabwe/South Africa match was a blast. Miller looked like Barry Bonds in that one World Series. Cracking sixes on the regular.

Ireland/West Indies fun. WI is batting first and Ireland is really crushing them.

 

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I think T20 cricket could be viable in the US given time ala MLS. There's certainly an audience for it, and I don't see where commercials would be an issue if soccer can work around it here.

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Right wingers would be full of outrage that a sport that brazenly features an enemy of American freedom like Pakistan to be one of the leading participants is allowed to sully the air waves, if the histrionics of dolts evidenced by Ann Coulter's hate on the World Cup are any sort of barometer.

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I enjoyed watching the IPL a couple years ago when I was able to catch it from the start.  It was fun trying to figure out what was going on having never watched cricket before.  It didn't hurt that one of the teams was led by a scorching hot actress I believe and I watched Chris Gayle go ham when he was batting that year.

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I was happy that the IPL has made at least a small footprint on TV here but I have never really enjoyed 20/20 the way I do the longer formats, though I don't hate it the way some purists do. Actually I think that has more to do with me simply not really caring about any of the club teams or the IPL format. Cricket is the rare team sport where really the international games are the business for me. I wish they'd at least show the test match highlights at like 1 AM on one of the million sports feeds here though. I mean, I followed the game as religiously as possible basically through Cricinfo for years (and I think their live text commentators actually do a pretty solid job), but at some point that just wore thin.

 

The pricing on the world cup package is... certainly something. Good luck with that. At least there are 1 hour condensed highlight shows running on Sportsnet One here.

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Is the Irish cricket team the one I should get behind? They seem like a quality mid-major filled with experience without being jaded. My grandparents were also born in Ireland. They don't have a chance at winning this, I assume, but are the most fun team?

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They are the best of the "associate" teams i.e. teams that don't play test cricket - they are usually good for an upset or two in each tournament - they don't have the strength in depth though.

 

And their 2 best players are actually playing with England - one of them being the captain of England

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