The Cricket World Cup attracts the third highest global collection of television viewers behind the FIFA World Cup and the Summer Olympics. Why is cricket so popular?
The Cricket World Cup is currently taking place in Australia and New Zealand. Yes, the game that we typically refer to as, “it’s like baseball, right?” Baseball draws its roots from cricket, but both games are very different.
The similarities end at the bat, ball and innings used. Even then there are differences that separate the two. For example the bat is different from the round Louisville Slugger that is typically associated with baseball. The cricket bat is flat and looks more like a paddle.
There is bowling involved, but this is simply what is meant by one team’s player throwing the ball towards the other team’s player who is up to bat, similar to pitching. There is no “pitching”, but there is a pitch which signifies the piece of field between the bowler and the batter.
The International Cricket Council (ICC) is in charge of upholding the laws of cricket. They also decide where to host the World Cup every four years. The first Cricket World Cup was held in England in 1975. It has continued to grow in popularity since then.
The tournament initially uses a round robin approach for two subgroups with seven teams each that have been selected as the world’s most elite teams. The top two teams from each group will then move on to the semi-finals. The winners at this point then go on to the final game where the winner is decided.
Cricket can seem confusing, but this can be true with anything new. Most citizens of Australasia, South Africa or the United Kingdom could give an in-depth analysis of the sport. There are even cricket fantasy leagues for the sport’s die-hard fans.
There is still a lot to learn about the game of cricket, but now is a good time to acquire the knowledge through the World Cup. The viewership that we contribute would be in good company with over 2 billion other fans. If now is a bad time to learn about a new sport then don’t worry; you have four more years to study up for the next Cricket World Cup which will take place in England in 2019.