Cricket is a game played largely in Britain and its former colonies, such as India. Like baseball, there are two teams playing against each other in periods called innings where they try to score runs and get the other team out. There are players with large wooden sticks that try to hit balls thrown in their direction, in this case by players named “bowlers” instead of “pitchers,” as well as fielders that try to catch balls and get the batsmen out. Despite these similarities, cricket is very different than baseball in many ways, and there are weird rules in cricket that may befuddle those unfamiliar with this sport.
Rock, Paper, Scissors in Cricket Matches
When decisions in a game of cricket need to be made, an umpire is usually the person making the call. According to Michigan State University, however, in some cases the decisions are made by playing the familiar children’s’ game of Rock, Paper, Scissors. This could be used, for example, in the case where one team requests a game be suspended due to weather or light issues and an umpire is unavailable. The team of the player who wins the Rock, Paper, Scissors match has the decision ruled in their favor.
Weird Fielder and Batsmen Rules in Cricket
Baseball fans are very familiar with fielders using gloves to help them catch balls and protect their hands from fast moving hard balls. Purdue University’s “An Explanation of Cricket” states that fielders in cricket are not allowed to use gloves in order to catch, despite the cricket balls being just about as hard as a baseball. Batsmen also run with their bats after a hit instead of dropping them as in baseball. This weird rule can cause an out if the batsmen hits the ball, then deliberately hits it again with his bat while running on the field.
Spitballs Allowed in Cricket
A bowler, comparable to a pitcher in baseball, may apply spit or sweat to “polish” the ball. This is a huge no-no in baseball, but according to Purdue it is perfectly permissible in cricket. Bowlers usually try to keep one side of the ball polished and the other rough. They use sweat or spit and rub the ball on their trousers to achieve this, which helps the ball curve in the air when thrown. Bowlers may not alter the ball in any other way or apply any other substance.