Sunday, July 3, 2011

Rained Out

Technically this should be my last post about cricket. It's now a new month, which means I should be giving the game a score. However, because I started late and last week's game got rained out. I'm giving the game one more week.

That's one of the annoying things about outdoor sports though, isn't it? Sometimes the weather gets to decide what you do.

On Monday is was clear that higher powers were against me exercising. I got up before 6 a.m. to go to the gym, only to find out the person with the keys had slept in and wasn't around to open it for everyone else standing and waiting. Then, that evening it started raining and my friend told me the game would be rained out. So, I went home and watched TV.

But because I didn't get to play doesn't mean I don't have cricket wisdom to share. (Well, "wisdom" is a loosely used term here.)

The field is round, unlike a baseball field. Although it's easiest to hit a "six" (i.e. when the ball goes over the boundary line without touching ground you get six points without needing to run) like a baseball slugger, the reality is you can hit the ball any direction you want. Typically in cricket the bowl ("pitch") bounces before getting to the batter; as a result, it's sometimes easier to help the ball continue on it's journey beyond you. During my practice week my friend Luke helped me get my batting stance down. Here are a few poses you could try on the pitch.

Protecting the wicket with your body, the bat should be angled down to avoid a "fly ball" that can be easily caught

Hitting the ball up high

Hitting the ball behind you
Everyone I mention I'm trying cricket to scoffs and says, "Doesn't it last 7 days?"

Let me bust that myth. In professional leagues it's true, the game can go on forever. However, in amateur leagues like the one I've been invited to participate in, the rules ensure that you'll be off the pitch within a few hours. There are limited "overs" (which mean each player/team will only receive so many bowls). As a result the game timing is a lot like baseball. Otherwise, I wouldn't have time to write this blog.

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