Cricket is widely popular among south asians, it can be equated to as the most important ‘popular’ sports culture in those countries. In fact even among the most rural communities, cricket is being played and followed like a religion.
While abroad in another south asian country, I happened to be in the time where a test match was being played between the host nation and from mine. As soon as I entered the arena, I was surprised to see the level of interest regular folks had over the game. Even though it was a test match, which is a lot longer and slower than other versions of the game, people were on the edge of their seats.
One can see why the game is so popular, given the mental strategy required to outperform the opponents. It’s where players need to wear helmets, and body protection to protect themselves from a very hard ball, coming at a person at lightning speed. A dangerous but yet civilized game. However, the main reason of it’s popularity is because of the British empire, it’s the empire legacy that people of the host nation adopted to playing what the ‘elites’ liked to play, and also what to drink, hence ‘tea’ is also a celebrated ‘cultural’ drink.
While sitting on the ground enjoying a lovely day, with green grass, blue sky, sun shining, with players battling on the field, I am reminded of how people are celebrating the legacy of one of history’s largest empire.