Chapter : 4. History and sport [ The Story of Cricket ]

The Spread Of Cricket

(i) In these colonies, cricket was established as a popular sport either by white settlers (as in South Africa, Zimbabwe, Australia, New Zealand, the West Indies and Kenya) or by local elites who wanted to copy the habits of their colonial masters, as in India.
(ii) While British imperial officials brought the game to the colonies, they made little effort to spread the game, especially in colonial territories
(iii) Playing cricket became a sign of superior social and racial status, and the Afro-Caribbean population was discouraged from participating in organised club cricket, which remained dominated by white plantation owners and their servants.
(iv) The first non-white club in the West Indies was established towards the end of the nineteenth century, and even in this case its members were light-skinned mulattos.
(v) Despite the exclusiveness of the white cricket elite in the West Indies, the game became hugely popular in the Caribbean.
(vi) At the time of their independence many of the political leaders of Caribbean countries like Forbes Burnham and Eric Williams saw in the game a chance for self-respect and international standing.
(vi) When the West Indies won its first Test series against England in 1950, it was celebrated as a national achievement, as a way of demonstrating that West Indians were the equals of white Englishmen.
(viii) The first time a black player led the West Indies Test team was in 1960 when Frank Worrell was named captain
(ix) Through the early history of Indian first class cricket, teams were not organised on geographical principle sand it was not till 1932 that a national team was given the right to represent India in a Test match.

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