The Cricket Fever of Pakistan – Why Do We Love the Game So Much?

by The House

The Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) in London is responsible for upholding the Laws of Cricket, which govern the game. South Asia, Australia, the UK, Southern Africa, India, Pakistan, and the West Indies are the regions where cricket is most popular.

The International Cricket Council (ICC), which has more than 100 members and 12 full members who participate in Test matches, is the authority that oversees the sport. Learn more about why cricket is so popular in Pakistan in this article.

The Passion for Cricket – An Introduction to the Sport

A 22-yard (20-meter) pitch and wickets at each end of the field, with two bails balanced on three stumps at each, are at the center of the cricket field, where two teams of eleven players bat and bowl. While the bowling and fielding side attempts to stop this (by keeping the ball from leaving the field and getting it to either wicket) and dismiss each batter, the batting side earns runs by striking the ball bowled at one of the wickets with the bat and then dashing between the wickets (so they are “out”).

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Being bowled, having the ball strike the stumps and knock the bails off, having the ball caught by the fielding side after it has been struck by the bat but before it reaches the ground, or having the ball strike a wicket before the batter can cross the crease in front of the wickets are all examples of ways to be dismissed.

The innings terminate when ten hitters have been retired, and the teams switch places. In international matches, a match referee and a third umpire assist the two umpires who officiate the game. They interact with two off-field scorers who keep track of the game’s statistical data.

A Brief History of Cricket

Cricket is usually accepted to have started as a kid’s game in the southeastern regions of England at some point during the Middle Ages. Despite assertions to the contrary, the oldest conclusive evidence of cricket play dates back to a court case in Guildford in January 1597. For most of the 17th century, cricket was a quiet local pastime. In the 18th century, the sport saw significant development and eventually became England’s national sport. The two requirements of patronage and betting served as the foundation for its success. In London, cricket was popularized as early as 1707.

The “Golden Age of Cricket” was the final two decades prior to World War One. Although the term is sentimental because to the general sense of loss brought on by the war, the time period did yield some outstanding players and memorable games, particularly as structured competition at the county and Test levels grew.

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Canada triumphed in the first-ever international game, which was played in Toronto in 1844 amongst what were basically club teams from the United States and Canada. The first international tour was made by a group of English players in 1859, travelling to North America.

By the middle of the 19th century, the game had expanded far thanks in part to the British Empire and was well-established in Australia, the Caribbean, British India (which includes the modern nations of Pakistan and Bangladesh), New Zealand, North America, and South Africa. When South Africa played England in 1888–1891, test cricket started to gain popularity.

Before the WW2, the West Indies (1928), New Zealand (1930), and India (1932) joined Test cricket. After the war, Pakistan (1952), Sri Lanka (1982), Zimbabwe (1992), Bangladesh (2000), Ireland (2018), and Afghanistan (both 2018) joined.

Cricket in Pakistan

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Pakistan’s history with cricket goes back before the nation was founded in 1947. The first international cricket tournament took place between Australia and Karachi, Sindh (nowadays Pakistan) on November 22, 1935. 5,000 Karachi residents watched the game. During the colonialism of British India, the British introduced cricket in the region, which layer became the most prevalent sport amongst the nation.

Pakistan is an accredited player in both the Asian Cricket Council and the International Cricket Council. The Pakistan Cricket Board governs all official domestic tournaments.  The 1992 Cricket World Cup, the 2009 ICC T20 World Cup, the 2017 ICC Champions Trophy, the 2004 and 2006 ICC Under-19 Cricket World Cup, the 2000 and 2012 ACC Asia Cup, and the 2016 ICC Test Championship were all won by Pakistan.

The Passion of the Pakistani People

Pakistan is a cricket crazy nation. The sport is more than just a game here, it is a passion.  It has the power to bring people together and unite them like no other sport can. In nearly every city and hamlet in Pakistan, there are local cricket clubs and unofficial competitions. Children in Pakistan begin playing cricket at an early age.

For Pakistanis, it is a source of great pride. When the national team does well, the whole nation rejoices. And when they don’t, everyone feels the pain. For Pakistani cricket fans, there’s nothing quite like watching their team play on the world stage. It’s a moment of intense pride and patriotism, when all of Pakistan comes together to support their boys in green.

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The attack on the Sri Lankan players’ bus in 2009 was a catastrophe for Pakistani cricket, which resulted in a huge loss. International cricket left Pakistan because of the ongoing terrorism. Fortunately, after several years due to the immense efforts of Pakistani government, it’s coming back. Hopes are high again to receive foreign teams and host world cups again.

Why Cricket is More than Just a Game?

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For many Pakistanis, cricket is a symbol of their identity. It is not just a sport, but an important part of the country’s culture and history. Cricket has been played in Pakistan for centuries and has always been popular.

Pakistanis are some of the most passionate cricket fans in the world. They follow the sport closely and support their team passionately. Cricket means everything to them and they take great pride in their team’s success.

The majority of Pakistani cricketing legends’ tales describe how they first fell in love with the sport through street cricket and then were motivated to emulate their heroes’ feats after seeing them play in stadiums throughout Pakistan.

People claim that Pakistanis are fervent soccer fans all around the world. They have observed the players up close, seen Babar Azam and Rizwan run and scream after hitting a century, and witnessed the hysterical joy when Shaheen or Shadab grabs a wicket. They haven’t, however, seen the players who can be found anywhere in the nation. You can see cricket matches every single day in every nook and every corner of the country.

How Cricket Unites the Nation?

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Even though they have had more downs than ups in over 70 years, Pakistanis’ love for cricket is as old as the nation itself and has only been stronger over time. Pakistan’s national sport is hockey, but many people prefer cricket. People from all around the nation play it. Pakistan Super League was created as a result of enduring love for cricket (PSL). 

There are extensive preparations performed in advance of every cricket competition. In the vast playgrounds around the nation, where spectators from all over the region congregate to watch the game, large LED screens are being installed. Shops are closed early on those days when it’s an important match, particularly if it’s Pakistan vs India. You will rarely see any shops open at that time. The entire famalies gather in one room in front of a single screen to enjoy and support the team. Pakistanis would also swarm the top cricket betting websites anytime a significant event occurred.

You can see people getting emotional and crying when the Pakistani team loses. Who can forget the “Tum jeeto ya haaro, humen tum se pyar hai” scenes all over social media to uplift the national team’s morales and save them from despair and regret. It’s always a sweet sight seeing the love and respect Pakistanis have for their cricket team.

On the contrary, when the Pakistani team wins the match, the celebrations are spectacular. People gather on the roads and in public spaces to celebrate. They hug and congratulate each other on their victory. In some areas you can even see fireworks and crackers. Cricket unites all the people regardless of whether we win or lose. To observe the true spirit of unity, take a look at Pakistanis during a cricket match.

Pakistan-India Rivalry in Cricket

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Pakistan and India have a long-standing cricket rivalry. The two countries have played each other in over 200 cricket matches since their first meeting in 1952. The rivalry is often referred to as the “mother of all cricketing rivalries”.

The Pakistan-India cricket rivalry is not just about the sport. It is also about nationalism and geopolitics. The countries have a history of conflict, and their cricket matches often reflect that tension.

The rivalry between Pakistan and India is one of the most intense in all of sport. It is a reflection of the political and cultural tensions between the two countries. Cricket is more than just a game for both Pakistan and India; it is a way to show who is the better nation. Although it is commonly said to tease the other country, you will sometimes even see televisions been broken if any of the country loses a match. 

Cricket – An Emotional Roller-coaster

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Cricket is a truly unique experience for all of us. Every game is unpredictable. No matter which team wins, every game is a fresh start, a new adventure, a series of new challenges.

If we talk about the cricket matches of Pakistan, you can never tell what will happen next, and who will win. Pakistani team has a history of teasing the nation in a good way. Every match is an emotional roller-coaster ride. It keeps you in an unsure state throughout the match.

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There have been several instances when our faces showed signs of disappointment and sadness, and suddenly the entire course of the match changes when Asif Ali hit four consecutive sixes, or when Naseem Shah, who is a bowler, hit two sixes and won the match. Everyone was extremely astonished, and of course who would have thought we will win those matches. After such a match, the joy and respect is definitely doubled.

Why We Will Always Love the Game?

In conclusion, cricket fever will always remain in Pakistan because it is not just a game, it’s a passion. It is a game that is enjoyed by both young and old and provides a sense of unity among Pakistanis. Cricket brings people together and creates lasting memories that are cherished by all. It has the power to unite people and instill pride in the nation. Cricket has produced some of the biggest icons in Pakistan and will continue to do so for many years to come.

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