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What on earth is Cricket?

Cricket is a game played in every continent, whether it be on the beach in the West Indies, in the shady pavillions of South America or on the dusty sun-baked earth in Pakistan. The enduring image for many, however, is the village green on a lazy summer's day in the mother country of the sport - England.

Maybe you will have chance on your walking vacation to catch a game of village cricket, or perhaps you'd like the opportunity to see the game at county or international level. We are only too pleased to help accomodate your wishes on your vacation with us. Our office in England will call you on receipt of your enquiry.


Cricket for the uninitiated

So what is cricket exactly?

For the observer, cricket at its best consists of the following - a peasant sunny day, the village green, a friend for conversation, and a refreshing drink from the clubhouse. From time to time, a pause in the conversation gives us time to take in the scene of white pressed cricket linen against the lush green of the cricket ground and applaud the galantry of the batsman or the efforts of the fielders. We'll note the new score as someone leans out from the open window of the green wooden hut on which the large faded scoreboard hangs and places the numbers for the latest score on the nails.

So what are the rules, you ask?

A brief explanation is necessary perhaps, for those whose inquisitive nature goes beyond the description above. If it all gets too much, click the HELP! links and you'll return to the top of the page.

Eleven players are on each team. The fielding side are all on the cricket field at one time. The other team have only two players on the field - two batters. They stand facing each other by their wickets, the three wooden sticks in the picture above. One of the fielding team is the bowler, who bowls the ball from behind one wicket to the batsman at the wicket opposite. HELP!

For the batsmen, the object of the game is simple: to score as many points or "runs" as possible. After the batsman opposite the bowler has (hopefully) hit the ball, both batsmen then run from one wicket to the opposite wicket, crossing in the middle as they go. When both reach the other wicket a "run" is scored. If there is time, they may run back again, thus scoring two, or three runs etc. Should the ball reach the edge or "boundry" of the field, the batsman automatically scores four runs. Should the ball go over the boundry without bouncing, the batsman scores six runs.

The bowler and his team need to get the batmen out. There are several ways to do this: HELP!

BOWLED - hitting the wicket behind the batsman with the ball when bowling,
CAUGHT - any of the fielding team catching the ball after it has hit the bat but before it has bounced,
STUMPED - The fielder squatting behind the receiving batsman's wicket, stops the balls and throws it on the wicket before the batsman has brought his bat back to touch the floor after an attempted hit,
OUT OF CREASE - The area around the wicket is called the crease. When the batsman is in this area with his bat touching the ground he is safe or "in". When either batsman leaves this area to run, any fielder can throw or touch the ball on to the wicket and one batsman is out.
LBW or LEG BEFORE WICKET - If, when bowling, the bowler stikes the receiving batsman's leg below the knee, he is out if the leg is directly in front of the wicket. HELP!

When a batsman is "out" he leaves the field and is replaced by a teammate who is still to bat. When only one batsman is left after all others have batted, the team is "out". The batting team become the fielding team and vice versa. When both teams have batted, this is the end of that round or "innings"

The bowler has six bowls at one go at the same wicket or at the same end. Six balls make one "over". At the end of the over, another fielder must become bowler and must bowl from the other wicket. The receiving batsman may change depending on how many times they ran on the last ball.

Some games last for a certain number of innings, other last a certain length of time and others last a specific number of overs, depending on the kind of match being played. Cricket reqires a great deal of skill, more than the casual observer may realise. Not only must all cricketers field and bat and sometimes bowl, the weather, temperature, condition of the ground, spin on the ball, wear on the ball also have a significant effect on the game. HELP!

Many villages in England have a cricket green, a local team and are formed into leagues. Each county also has a team which plays in the nation league. From the county teams, the National Team selectors choose the players for the national side.

This page is only meant as a brief guide to the game for the clueless. On your vacation with us maybe you will now be content with a friend, some conversation, a drink from the clubhouse and a pause now and then to watch the scoreboard!



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