Cricket emerged out of stick-and-ball games in England 500 years ago. The word bat is an English word that means stick or club. By the 17th century, cricket was a distinguishable sport. Till the middle of the 18th century, the shape of the cricket bat was similar to the shape of the hockey stick. It is a very strange thing, that it can be played for a long five days and can still end with a draw. Whereas, the other games do not take this long time. The other unique thing about cricket is that playgrounds can be of any dimension, but the pitch is specified as 22 yards. The ground can be oval or circular. Cricket was the earliest team sport to be standardized. In 1744, the book ‘Laws of Cricket’ was written. Which states that there must be two umpires to decide all disputes. The stumps of 22 inches high and bail of six inches. The ball must be between five and six ounces. Hambledon was the world’s first cricket club to be founded in the 1760s and in 1787 Marylebone Cricket Club was founded.
Between the 1760s and 1770s, the ball was pitched over the shoulder, which gave various new advantages to the players. The other change was made that the bats were replaced with the straight bat. The ball’s weight was between 5½ to 5¾ ounces and the width of the bat to four inches. The first leg-before law was introduced in 1774 and the third stump came into action. In 1780, the length of the major match was fixed to three days and the six-seam cricket ball came into existence.
Throughout time, the equipment of the game changed accordingly. Before the bats were made by cutting one piece of wood but now it consists of two pieces of wood. The protective equipment of cricket has changed by the advanced in technology. In 1848, protective pads were made of vulcanized rubber. The helmets were made out of metal and synthetic material which is lightweight.
In India, cricket was originated in Bombay and the first Indian community which started playing cricket was the Parsis known as Zoroastrians. Parsis were in close contact with the British due to their interest in trade. The first club founded in India was the Oriental Cricket Club in Bombay in 1848. The rivalry between the Parsis and the Bombay Gymkhana ended with a happy ending, the Parsi team won the match over Bombay Gymkhana. C.K. Nayudu was India’s first Test captain. In 1932, India played its first Test match and after a decade and a half India became an independent nation. The first Test match was played between England and Australia.
With the invention of the television, the viewer of cricket has expanded throughout time. Youth and kids are aspiring to become a cricketer. Satellite television has created a global market for cricket. India has the largest viewership and largest market. The global market has made the Indian cricketers best-paid and famous. Now the non-professionals are replaced by professionals players. Technology has changed cricket remarkably.