All these years, living in Australia, I scoffed at the game of cricket. Games that take whole days, and sometimes a week, to get a result? And then what do all those numbers mean when they give the score? What about strange terms such as ducks, silly legs, yorkers and the like?
Well, the terrible thing is that I have been hooked, and by none other than my son (the techie one), who likes to watch the cricket on television. This summer I started looking at a few minutes of a game, and asking dumb questions which were more or less patiently answered. But I was learning. Those few minutes gradually grew to quarter hours, half hours, and then before I knew it, I wanted to watch almost the whole game (for you from non-cricketing countries, watching a whole game is a serious time commitment - they go for 8 hours or so and even take breaks for tea and dinner, and that's just for one-day cricket!). I can now look at a screen of statistics and know what most of them mean.
I am really impressed with the ball handling skills, especially catches taken at close range and high speed. And as the balls usually bounce before the batter can hit it, unlike in baseball, the unpredictability of where the ball is going to go is increased enormously. So this is the sport I can watch when the Australian footy season is not on.
One thing though: I've been told I'm NOT to "barrack", or groan at missed catches or shout at close calls during a possible run out. I guess that's still too much like being a footy fan for my son's tastes (Val checks banner at top of screen to see how long it is until footy season starts)