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As best as Embassy Row can determine, cricket involves two teams of 11 players each dressed in white flannel trousers and sweaters with heraldic crests. Tea and little sandwiches with the crusts cut off apparently have something to do with the game, which can go on for several days.
In cricket, like baseball, the team with the most runs wins. However cricket matches can rack up hundreds of runs. Also like baseball, a batter — called a “batsman” — hits a ball thrown by a pitcher — called a “bowler.” Confused?
That’s about where the similarities end.
Cricket is played on a rectangular “pitch,” 22 yards long and 10 feet wide. At each end is a wicket — three vertical sticks balancing two smaller horizontal ones. One way to eliminate a batsman is for the bowler to knock off the small sticks with the ball.
There are only two innings, instead of nine. The inning is over after all 11 players from one side take turns at bat. Then they become the fielders and the opposing team the batsmen.
A “sticky wicket” occurs when the field is damp and the ball bounces poorly.
No one strikes out in cricket — which is one reason the game can go on and on. Aside from knocking the sticks off the wicket, there are three other ways to eliminate a batsman. One is called “leg before wicket” — but that’s a call for the umpire.
• Embassy Row is published on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. James Morrison can be reached at email@example.com or @EmbassyRow.
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
James Morrison joined the The Washington Times in 1983 as a local reporter covering Alexandria, Va. A year later, he was assigned to open a Times bureau in Canada. From 1987 to 1989, Mr. Morrison was The Washington Times reporter in London, covering Britain, Western Europe and NATO issues. After returning to Washington, he served as an assistant foreign editor ...
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