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India is a diverse country with various types of religions, castes, and beliefs. In a country as vast as India, every region has its popular sports but one sport that is the most popular sport throughout the country is Cricket. Originating in East England, cricket was brought to India by the Britishers in the 18th century. During the colonial period, Indians learned to play cricket and the popularity of this sport increased. It was in 1848 that India’s first cricket club was formed by the Parsi community of Bombay. It was named as Oriental Cricket Club. This club comprised only Indian members. More such clubs were formed by cricket-loving Indians throughout India. Cricket was able to gain followers and players from every part of the country.

After years of struggles, a board was formed in 1928 to govern the cricket sport in India. This board was named as Board of Control for Cricket in India, popularly known as BCCI. The BCCI was under the governance of the Imperial Cricket Conference, which was later got renamed as International Cricket Council or ICC. Since the origins of cricket were British so naturally the Brishters kept themselves at the top of the hierarchy in the ICC. When India became a member of the ICC it was still a British colony and hence was not given much importance. In 1932 Indian cricket team played its first international match at the famous Lord’s stadium in London. It was the first time that India was introduced to a Test match. Though the team lost because of poor experience, it did not stop them from trying. Over the years the condition of cricket improved in India and more opportunities were given to Indian cricket players.

India recorded its first test match victory in 1952. Now not only India was an independent nation but also a developing one. Cricket became a major sport in India and the government supported it because it was good for the economy and international relations as well. During the 1960s India won cricket matches against some major countries like England, New Zealand, and Australia. Indians showed love and support for their cricket team. These victories helped in making a successful path for cricket in India.

With the emergence of the One Day International(ODI) cricket got a new dimension. By the 1980s Indian cricket team had some mind-blowing players like Ravi Shastri and Kapil Dev. The proud moment for India came in 1983 when Kalip Dev held the World Cup Trophy in his hands. India won its first world cup by defeating the two-time champion West Indies at the Lord’s. This victory left a mark on the world and the hearts of Indians. Cricket reached a new height of popularity in the country. After this victory, India realized its potential and worked hard toward its bright future in cricket. Over the years great cricketers like Sachin Tendulkar, Anil Kumble, Sourav Ganguly, etc. changed the face of the game. India rose to the top and was now among the top cricket-playing countries in the world. Under the captaincy of M.S.

Dhoni, the Indian cricket team became the world’s number-one cricket team. Under his captaincy, India won the ICC T20 World cup in 2007, ICC ODI World Cup in 2011, and the ICC Champions Trophy in 2013. These victories were phenomenal and praiseworthy. Over the past decade, the India cricket team has seen many young and talented players like Virat Kholi, Suresh Raina, Jasprit Bumrah, R Ashwin, etc. All these talented cricketers are contributing to India’s great Cricket performance.

The Indian Premier League or IPL has further popularised cricket. The involvement of celebrities has given cricket a new form. IPL also helps to improve international bonds. When cricketers from different countries form a team they interact with each other on more friendly terms. People like to see how cricketers from different countries form a bond and play together to win.

Over the decades India kept on improving its game and the love and devotion of people towards cricket kept on increasing. Cricket helped to unite our diverse country. It became a string that tied the people of different regions, religions, castes, and creeds together. That’s the beauty of cricket in India. Our emotions are involved in this game. The love and respect that cricket has earned in India are unmatched. From being a British colony to excelling in a game introduced by the Bristishers, India has indeed proved that nothing is impossible for India.

Shruti Singh

BSc Maths

Banasthali Vidyapith

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