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Cricket In India – Top 10 Things You Didn’t Know

Cricket is more than just a sport in India. For many, it is almost a religion. When the Indian cricket team plays a match, you can find many ardent fans making religious offerings to their Gods, praying for their favourite team to win.

Though field hockey is considered by many as the national game for India, cricket has many more followers. Also, many Indians know their cricket better than field hockey. Teaching a child to play cricket at a very young age is as natural as teaching them to read and write, for many Indian families, especially if it is a boy.

Facts About Cricket in India You Didn’t Know

Cricket Player

Though many Indians know their cricket team and the game itself like the back of their hand, there are some interesting facts about Indian cricket, which many may not know. Here we have carefully chosen 10 such facts that can surprise even some of the biggest fans:

•   Everyone knows Sachin Tendulkar is one of the best cricket players (batsmen) in the world and is nicknamed the God of cricket for his numerous records. Many do not know that more than 99% of the cricketers worldwide, who have represented their countries in ODIs (One Day International), have not scored even half of what Sachin has scored individually in his entire ODI career.

•   Lala Amarnath was the first test cricket team captain for India. He has been the only person to get the legendary cricketer – Don Bradman out by a hit wicket. No one else in the world has been able to accomplish such a feat.

•   MS Dhoni one of the most celebrated captains of Indian cricket and more fondly known as captain cool scored a whooping 183 runs against Sri Lanka in an ODI match in 2005. This is a world record that no other wicketkeeper has been able to break.

•   Narendra Hirwani was all of 19 years when he made his test debut as a part of the Indian cricket team. He took 8 wickets in each of the 2 innings against West Indies – a total of 16 wickets in one single match.

•   Indian cricket team scored their first ever win only in 1952, which is 19 years since they made their first ever appearance in 1932. In the first fifty years of its international cricket, the Indian cricket team was one of the weakest.

•   Virat Kohli, the Indian cricket team captain who took over after the infamous MS Dhoni, scored his very first wicket in the 0th ball of his career. Confused? Let us explain.

When a ball goes wide, it is not counted as a ball bowled. However, the runs gained from that ball are included. So, when Virat Kohli bowled his first ever ball in international cricket in the year 2011 in a T20 match against England, it was wide. The batsman – Kevin Pietersen, who had stepped out of the crease in an attempt to hit a boundary, was stumped out by the wicket-keeper – MS Dhoni. This left Kohli with 6 balls remaining in the over with a wicket in hand.

•   Bapu Nadkarni – one of India’s renowned bowlers, was a left-arm spinner. He holds the world record for the most number of dot balls in a row – 131 consecutive dot balls (a ball the opposite team could not get a score from). This resulted in the most consecutive maiden overs – 21; against England in 1963. 

Though there are other similar and better records for most dot balls, Bapu Nadkarni holds the record for most consecutive maiden overs and dot balls in the current 6 balls per over format.

•   The Indian cricket team is the only team to have won the world cup in all three formats. They won the 60 overs world cup in 1983, 50 overs world cup in 2011, and 20 overs world cup in 2007. They are also the first cricket team to win the world cup on their home ground. 

•   The Indian women’s cricket team is making its waves around the world too. In 2009, during the ICC world cup held in Australia, the six hit by Harmanpreet Kaur drew a lot of suspicions. She had to undergo a dope test to ensure she was not on any performance-enhancing drugs and her bat had to be checked in a laboratory to ensure it was a standard cricket bat. 

Apart from these 10 interesting facts about the Indian cricket team and its members, there is another interesting fact. Though this is not about Indian cricket, it is about one of its legendary players – Sunil Gavaskar. Sunil Gavaskar was apparently switched at birth. If not for his very observant uncle, who found this mishap and tracked him down, Sunil Gavaskar would’ve grown up as a fisher woman’s son. Who is to say if he would’ve contributed to Indian cricket the same way he hadn’t been found?


To Sum up

Indians play and excel in many sports. However, the fan following for cricket is very high. This has resulted in many learning the sport, excelling at it in their ways, and joining the national team. In India, cricket is played almost all year around. There are different tournaments to keep the cricket fans glued to their screens, praying for their team to win.

Though cricket is predominantly a male-dominated sport in India, the women’s cricket team is gaining attention. Their feats on the ground have earned them some sweet victories against opponents and a society that did not favour Indian girls playing like the boys.

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