May 22, 2012

Cricket starts to make noise in the United States

Liz Clarke writes in the Washington Post that though a majority of Americans still don’t understand the rules of cricket, the sport is gradually gaining popularity in New York, Florida and Washington

Liz Clarke writes in the Washington Post that though a majority of Americans still don’t understand the rules of cricket, the sport is gradually gaining popularity in New York, Florida and Washington. Some have even said cricket is America's fastest-growing sport, with 15 million fans and an estimated 200,000 players.

To most Americans, cricket is a puzzlement. Even savvy sports fans know little more than it’s traditionally played in white trousers, involves a flat wooden bat and lots of running back and forth. Fewer still realize it has a rich tradition in the United States; it predates by 140 years the national pastime of baseball, which is cricket’s direct descendant.

But cricket hotbeds exist — particularly in New York, Florida and California — spurred in the late 1970s by immigrants from the West Indies, which ruled the sport at the time. It was fueled anew as a wave of workers from south Asia arrived for the tech boom of the late-1980s and ’90s.

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