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TO PLAY CRICKET IS EASY. TO UNDERSTAND THE GAME TAKES TIME.

RITUALS OF CRICKET

This section was inspired by former cricketer and now ABC Journalist/Cricket Writer, Barry Nicholls who talks about the childhood memories that influenced his love for cricket.

Like a lot of young boys growing up in Australia, Nicholls talks about cricket being part of his "landscape" at an early age.

Young cricketers are familiar with the schoolyard ritual of playing cricket at recess and lunch time where the pitch may be a part of flat ground with the "wickets" being an old rubbish bin, a suitably sized tree or several bags thrown on top of one another. The same principle applies with backyard "test" matches where such rules as "six and out" apply if the ball is hit over the fence, or an automatic four is scored if it is hit between the pine tree and rose bush. Youngsters pretend to be fast bowlers with long run ups, such as Brett Lee, Dennis Lillee or Ray Lindwall , depending on which year they were born.

Another area that Barry Nicholls found to be significant was the sense of ritual associated with Test cricket. He remembers how there is an order to things that include;

  • the crowd being polite compared to those in football codes.
  • clapping a batter reaching 50 runs.
  • umpires taking bails off at lunch.
  • signals by umpires that had a "magical" nature about them.
  • the scorebook that had a code that needed to be taught to understand. 

Of course there are many more.

Every young cricketer, whether playing in the backyard, at the beach or in an organised club match, has his/her own personal rituals that they use when enjoying a game with friends or opponents.