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Cricket History


Cricket is played all over the world by eccentric idiotic police constables and others who would like emulate them. It is also played in Australia and Yorkshire, and unlike rounders, it is not the same as baseball.

It is an apparently pointless sport with rules which no one really understands involving 15 men standing around in a field who occasionally run around, but on the whole stand completely motionless hoping something might happen. Cricket is universally considered one of the most boring and tedious of sports, but continues to be popular the world over with the boring and tedious.

A cricket match in action.
"Was he in the Beatles?" ~ George Dubya Bush on Cricket

Origins of Cricket

People have always been hitting balls with sticks, but in its current format Cricket was first mentioned in the now lost letter of St.Paul (Third Letter to the Umpire) which questioned a decision made in a game between the Corinthians and the Ephesians. St.Paul appears to have played in that game but 'threw his bat' at an opposing player and was sent to the pavilion, located in Rome, to answer for his 'unsporting behavior'. The Romans viewed cricket a 'Jewish game' and eventually banned it in favour of more gladiatorial contests.

The game of cricket was then lost it seems until the 17th century when it seems the Dutch found an old set of rules hidden in a book in Amsterdam. The Dutch who were known for tolerating a lot of things that earnt you either a hanging or burning in the rest of Europe called the game Krookeet and liked its slow, thoughtful pace and saw it had plenty of opportunities for a gin break or a long smoke on a clay pipe whilst 'playing the game'.

It's possible 'krookeet' would have stayed a Dutch peculiarity but in what are called the 'Anglo-Dutch Tulip Wars', England and the United Provinces (the name the Dutch called their country then) took each on in a series of wars at sea. In 1667, the Dutch fleet forced their way up towards the English port of Chatham in Kent where they captured and burnt the English fleet as it was at anchor. The Dutch had discovered the English sailors were on shore playing a rough game of 3,000 a side football and had neglected to keep anyone sober on watch. To add to their humiliation, the Dutch bombarded Chatham with krookeet balls containing instructions for the game as a taunt to their neighbours across the North Sea.

The Dutch kept playing Krookeet but instead got more interested in developing their trade in exotic substances and make advances with various forms of exotic and more interestingsex. This left the field clear for the English to pretend they invented 'cricket' and everyone believed them because they had far more convincing beards.

The Englishmen gradually evolved the sport into a form known as 'Test Match Cricket'. This required five days of good weather of hitting and throwing a ball to win. At this point the game became unplayable in England, which rarely has five days without rain, and so was taken up by other nations who had better weather.

The Australians, then developed "One Day Cricket" because no-one could be bothered playing for 5 days, and this was exported back to England who retaliated with "Twenty20 Cricket". The game of cricket is gradually evolving into a shorter game, and it is predicted that by the year 2020 a typical match of International Test "Quick Cricket" or "Tip and Run" will take about 5 minutes, leaving more time for drinking in the bar.

St.Paul checks the rule book before chucking his bat at another player.

The Evolution of Cricket

Archaeologists agree that certain quirks unique to cricket indicate that the sportwas played in the Middle Ages and possibly as early as the late-Triassic period. There is speculation as to how a bipedal dinosaur may have held a cricket bat, specifically:

  • The side-on stance of batsmen suggests that cricket pre-dates the evolutionary processes that caused the eyes to move from the sides of the head to the front of the face;
  • The straight-arm action of (most) bowlers suggests that cricket may date to a time before the development of the elbow in modern apes;
  • There is no archaeological evidence for any other sport involving meals being consumed by the players during the match (with the obvious exception indoor sports such as darts and poker), and this practice may have arisen from ritualistic cannibalism where the batsman is killed and eaten after being given 'out' by the umpire.
  • Cricket in not just rounders for over-grown public schoolboys, bogans, fawning colonials and fat Northerners. Honest.

India vs England in action at 1659 Cricket World Cup Final. Due to lack of technology they used bamboo sticks for LBW pads.


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