Live, eat and breathe cricket!
Time? From sunup to sundown. Location? On a little patch of land, a quiet back road, the beach or even a flat roof in the middle of a busy city. You can play cricket anytime, anywhere. And there is always television: broadcasting a match from the past or the present. Sri Lankans live, eat and breathe cricket!
Surprisingly enough, the history of cricket doesn’t date back very far. It was of course the British that brought the game with them. The first cricket match ever in Sri Lanka was played in 1832. It wasn’t until 1975 that the country made its international debut. Since then, the Sri Lankan national cricket team, nicknamed as The Lions, are a dominating force in the international cricketing arena.
Patience and endurance
The Test match which runs up to five days is a true test of patience and endurance. The One Day Cricket is the shorter format of the game where match ends in eight hours. The recently introduced twenty-twenty cricket or T20 is packed with fast paced action which only runs for three hours.
The biggest party
The Sri Lankan ‘Lions’ have managed to reach the highest points in both the One Day and T20 formats when they won the One Day World Cup in 1996 and the T20 World Cup in 2014. The later triggered the biggest party since the end of the country’s ethnic war.
It is certainly worth your while to visit a cricket match. No matter if the home team is winning or losing, there will be a party going on. People dancing, waving flags, cheering on the players in the pitch. And there is the papare band. Papare is said to originate from church festivals in Negombo. With its drums and horns it fuels the party and is therefore a must in Sri Lankan cricket matches.
You’re not going for a match? Why don’t you participate in one of the many games that you will encounter while you visit the country? Play a match with the local people on an open field or the street behind your hotel. For sure they will welcome you. To put it in cricket terms: they’ll think it’s a blast!!