NCERT Class 9 History Chapter 7: History and Sports: The Story of Cricket YouTube Lecture Handouts

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NCERT Class 9 History Chapter 7: History and Sports: The Story of Cricket

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  • History is not about dramatic events but cloth, food, music, medicines, literature and games

  • To establish friendship between nations and cricketers are seen as ambassadors of the country

  • 150 years ago, cricket was English game and was invented in England & was linked to culture of 19th century Victorian society – girls were not allowed to play games

  • Cricket spread to colonies – cricket was linked with politics of colonialism and nationalism

  • Cricket as national game was result of decades of historical development

Cricket Story

  • Bat means stick or club

  • By 17th century it became a game popular for Sundays

  • Till mid 18th century – bats were same as hockey sticks

  • Game to amuse, compete, stay fit and express loyalties

  • Origin in England and then penetration to India

  • Test Match – go for 5 days and still end in draw (lengthier than any other match) with 22 yards as length of pitch

  • Football match is over in around 1.5 hours

  • Other games lay down dimension of playing area but cricket does not (ground could be oval as in Adelaide and circular as in Chepauk, Chennai)

  • A six run at Melbourne ground needs to clear much more ground than for the same shot at Feroz Shah Kotla in Delhi

  • Cricket gave itself rules and regulations so that it could be played in uniform and standardized way well before team games like soccer and hockey

  • 1st written “Laws of Cricket” in 1774 - principals shall choose from amongst the gentlemen present two umpires who shall absolutely decide all disputes. The stumps must be 22 inches high and the bail across them six inches. The ball must be between 5 and 6 ounces, and the two sets of stumps 22 yards apart. There is no limit on shape and size of bat.

  • 1st world cricket club was formed in Hambledon in 1760s & Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) was founded in 1787.

  • MCC published 1st revision of laws and became guardian of cricket regulations – significant changes in second half of 18th century (during 1760s-70s it was important to pitch the ball through air rather than roll it – it gave bowlers option of length, deception through air and better pace) and replacement of curved bat with straight bat. Weight of the ball was limited to between 5½ to 5¾ ounces & width of the bat to four inches

  • In 1774: First leg-before law was published & third stump became common

  • By 1780: 3 days became length of major match and saw creation of 1st 6-seam cricket ball

  • Changes in 19th century – wide ball, circumference of ball, pads and gloves, introduction of boundaries and overarm bowling

  • Game got codified after industrial revolution when workers were paid by hour/day/week

  • Originally played on country commons (varied size) and unfenced public property

  • Even after boundaries were written, their distance from wicket was not specified – as per the law, umpire shall agree with both captains on the boundaries of the playing area

  • Bat, stump and bail – made of wood (blade of willow tree and handle of cane tree)

  • Ball – leather, twine or cork

  • Plastic, glass, fibre and metal are rejected

  • Australian cricketer Dennis Lillee played an innings with an aluminium bat, only to have it outlawed by the umpires

  • Invention of vulcanized rubber led to introduction of pads in 1848 and protective gloves; now helmets of metal and lightweight synthetic materials

Cricket in England

  • Rich and poor enter separately in the field

  • Rich played for pleasure called as amateurs (Gentleman) (for leisure and not enough money in game for rich to be interested in) – tend to be batsman – more energetic and hardworking and rules in their favor, they were captains

  • Poor played for profession called as professionals (Players) (wages were paid as patronage, subscription or gate money) – game was seasonal

  • Battle of Waterloo was won on the playing fields of Eton implies that Britain’s military success was based on the values taught to schoolboys in its public schools.

  • Eton was the most famous of these schools. English boarding school was the institution that trained English boys for careers in the military, the civil service and the church, the three great institutions of imperial England.

  • Thomas Arnold, headmaster of the famous Rugby School and founder of the modern public school system saw cricket and rugby not just as sports but as organized way of teaching (hierarchy, skills, code of honor and leadership qualities)

  • Napoleonic wars were won because of economic contribution of the iron works of Scotland and Wales, mills of Lancashire and the financial houses of the City of London

  • English led in trade which made Britain the leading power. The ruling power was superior of its young men, built in boarding schools, playing gentlemanly games like cricket.

  • Dorothea Beale, principal of Cheltenham Ladies College was not in favor of girls taking part in sports

Spread of Cricket

  • Cricket remained a colonial game limited to countries which were part of British Empire

  • Cricket was established as popular sport by white settlers in colonies

  • Playing cricket was a sign of superior social and racial status & pro-Caribbean population was discouraged from participating in organized club cricket (dominated by whites till 1930s)

  • In end of 19th century – 1st non-white club in West Indies was established but members were light skinned mulattos

  • It became popular in Caribbean (leaders like Forbes Burnham and Eric Williams saw chance for self-respect) – success in cricket meant racial equality and political progress

  • West Indies won 1st Test series in 1950 and celebrated it as national achievement of whites at par with Englishmen but had two ironies – West Indies team was captained by white player & it represented many dominions (self-governing areas) which later became independent countries. 1st black captain of West Indies in 1960 was Frank Worrell

  • After 1932 – national team was given right to represent India in test match

Cricket, Race & Religion

  • Cricket was 1st played in 1721 by English sailors in Cambay

  • 1792 – 1st cricket club established in Calcutta

  • Cricket came as escape from the strangeness and discomfort of stay in India

  • Indians started playing cricket mainly from small community of Zoroastrians, the Parsis (1st Indian Community to westernize due to closeness of trade)

  • 1st Indian cricket club was Oriental Cricket Club in Bombay in 1848

  • Parsi clubs were funded and sponsored by Tatas and Wadias

  • Rivalry between the Parsis and racist Bombay Gymkhana had a happy ending for these pioneers of Indian cricket. Parsi team beat the Bombay Gymkhana at cricket in 1889, just four years after the foundation of INC in 1885 (Dadabhai Naoroji)

  • By 1890s fund raising for Hindu and Islam Gymkhana. Colonial officials regarded religious communities as separate nationalities.

  • Quadrangular played by four teams: the Europeans, the Parsis, the Hindus and the Muslims.

  • Later became Pentangular when a fifth team was added, namely, the Rest, which comprised all the communities left over, such as the Indian Christians (Vijay Hazare, a Christian, played for the Rest).

  • Distinguished editor of newspaper the Bombay Chronicle, S.A. Brelvi, famous radio commentator A.F.S. Talyarkhan and Mahatma Gandhi condemned the Pentangular as a communally divisive competition that was out of place in a time when nationalists were trying to unite India’s diverse population.

  • Rival first class tournament on regional lines, National Cricket Championship (later Ranji Trophy) was established

  • Palwankar Baloo, Dalit from Poona – greatest Indian slow bowler; he played for Hindus in Quadrangular but was never made captain. His younger brother Vithal became a captain of Hindus in 1923

Modern Transformations

  • Cricket is dominated by tests and one day internationals

  • C.K.Nayudu – outstanding Indian batsman of his time, played 1st test matches against England in 1932 – he became India’s 1st Test Captain

  • India entered Test Cricket in 1932

  • 1st test was played b/w England and Australia when Australia was a white settler colony

  • Regulation of international cricket remained the business of the Imperial Cricket Conference ICC.

  • ICC renamed International Cricket Conference as late as 1965, was dominated by its foundation members, England and Australia, which retained the right of veto over its proceedings.

  • Not till 1989 was the privileged position of England and Australia scrapped in favor of equal membership.

  • England and other white commonwealth countries, Australia and New Zealand, continued to play Test cricket with South Africa, a racist state that practiced a policy of racial segregation (barred non-whites). India, Pakistan and West Indies boycotted South Africa but didn’t had necessary power in ICC to debar nation from test cricket.

  • That only came to pass when political pressure to isolate South Africa applied by the newly decolonized nations of Asia and Africa combined with liberal feeling in Britain and forced English cricket authorities to cancel a tour by South Africa in 1970.

  • 1970 – exclusion of South Africa from international cricket

  • 1971 – 1st one day international b/w England & Australia at Melbourne

  • 1975 – 1st world cup was staged

  • 1977 – celebrated 100 years of test matches

  • Kerry Packer – Australian TV tycoon started World Series Cricket and signed 51 world’s leading cricketers against the wish of national cricket board and staged unofficial test and cricket for 2 years - Colored dress, protective helmets, field restrictions, cricket under lights – cricket as marketable game with huge revenues

  • This broadened social base of cricket – slowly matches in Sydney were watched in Surat

  • ICC headquarters shifted from London to Dubai

  • Pakistan has pioneered two great advances in bowling: the doosra and the ‘reverse swing’.

    • Doosra to counter aggressive batsmen with heavy modern bats who were threatening to make finger-spin obsolete (spins in the opposite direction to an off break and aims to confuse the batsman)

    • ‘Reverse swing’ to move the ball in on dusty, unresponsive wickets under clear skies (when the ball is old - natural outswinger will become an inswinger and vice versa)


  • Hockey can count the Scottish game called shinty, the English and Welsh game called bandy and Irish hurling.

  • Hockey was introduced into India by the British army in colonial times

  • 1st hockey club in India was started in Calcutta in 1885-1886.

  • India represented Olympic Games for hockey - first time in 1928. In the finals, India defeated Holland by three goals to nil.

  • Under Dhyan Chand between 1928 and 1956, India won gold medals in six consecutive Olympic Games. India played 24 Olympic matches during this time, and won them all, scored 178 goals (at an average of 7.43 goals per match) and conceded only seven goals. The two other gold medals for India came in the 1964 Tokyo Olympics and the 1980 Moscow Olympics.


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