The Great Connector
Cricket. Where can we start? It’s fun, unique, thrilling, exciting and moving. As a global game, it connects in a world where things can feel difficult and scary. Cricket has the ability to link people, no matter about race, country, gender or occupation; it defies all differences and enables us to all share one passion.
Cricket happens all over the world, something that can be enjoyed all year round. We are able to join in a perpetual summer, wherever we are. Not only is cricket something we can play, watch and observe, cricket allows almost everyone to feel involved and inspired by its unique concept of the bat, the ball, the stumps, that can create such twists and turns, immediate excitement, lengthy periods of seemingly nothing and nerve-jangling finales (The 2019 World Cup Final between England and New Zealand for example).
Cricket. It can be played almost anywhere, across differing abilities. How many of us have backyard cricket battles! Those memories formed with family and friends will be ones to hold for a lifetime. The tangible aspects to the game itself, whether it is the feel of the new ball in the hand, the smell of the freshly cut pitch, the sight of the green grass combined with the white markings, the distinctive knock of the bat on a ball or the chatter of the fielders tension that can be almost felt.
Cricket teaches us about the importance of team as well as the importance of the individual, how to test our selves and support others, how to deal with the cruel finality of getting out and the euphoric sensation of taking a wicket. Many say cricket is a metaphor for life.
The great commentator John Arlott said:
“Cricket is a most precarious profession; it is called a team game but, in fact, no one is so lonely as a batsman facing a bowler supported by ten fieldsmen and observed by two umpires to ensure that his error does not go unpunished”
The talk of cricket feels to be almost everywhere. In pubs, at home, online, in the local newspaper, it creates a common bond amongst people who share a similar interest and deepens our knowledge about the game. Chatters about statistics of each player and match, how great the sunny weather has been, or not! Even whom we think might win the next Ashes! Not only is cricket a great subject, but it allows us to share our individual experiences and opinions, our stories and favourite memories of cricket, promoting a unique bond between people. It can be baffling to those that don’t yet understand this great game.
A quote from Stephen Fry seems to sum it up:
“I feel sorry for those who don't get cricket. They miss the most exquisite feelings of joy, agony, tension, thrill, surprise, glory and wonder”
From that moment the first ball is bowled, the excitement in the crowd and thrill of it all, cricket is truly unique and incredible, something we can all share, together.