Cricket match in progress in Stanley
Park, Vancouver
Cricket in Canada is believed to have been introduced in 1759 by the British soldiers. It was the most popular game in Canada until the early 20th century when it was overtaken by hockey. The popularity of the game was so high that the first prime minister of Canada, Sir John A. Macdonald, declared cricket as the national sport. Over time, cricket lost its popularity among Canadians while other sports such as hockey and baseball gained popularity. In 1892 a governing body called Cricket Canada was established to govern the sport in Canada. This governing body is still present today, headquartered in Toronto, Ontario.

Cricket is the fastest growing game in Canada. There are over 40,000 cricketers in Canada today. While Canada is not sanctioned to play Test matches, the team does take part in One Day International (ODI) matches. Canada also has a women’s cricket team. Canada is one of the top six associates of International Cricket Council. Canada has hosted various international matches featuring top cricket teams in the world. Scotiabank has teamed up with cricket Canada to implement programs such as the School Program where coaching, literature and equipment are provided to high school students who are interested in playing cricket. Another initiative called the Scotiabank National T20 Championship is a domestic competition where provincial cricket teams compete with each other on a rotational basis.

Cricket is played between 2 teams with 11 players on each team. The team consists of batsmen, bowlers and all rounders. It is played on a paler strip called the cricket pitch. The game’s objective is to score more runs than the other team and completely dismiss them. A team wins by scoring more runs than the other team who played first (in batting) or dismissing the opposite team before they can make a score higher than the one created by the team who played first (in bowling). A score is made by running from one end of the pitch to another. Multiple scores are awarded without running if the ball hits the boundary of the ground. Before starting the game, the captains of both teams toss a coin and the winner decides if his team will bat (offense, also called batting) or ball (defence, also called fielding). There are two batsmen playing at the same time while 9 players of the other team are spread in the ground for fielding, the 10th player acts as a bowler and the 11th player acts as a wicket keeper.

Bat: The bat is made of wood (usually white willow) and has the shape of a blade topped by a cylindrical handle.

Ball: The ball is a hard leather-seamed spheroid which is usually red or sometimes white in color.

Wickets: Three stumps that are hammered into the ground and topped with two bails.

Other protective gear such as pads, helmet and gloves are worn by the batsman and the wicketkeeper.

1. The batsman should stay within the marked line between the wickets to avoid dismissal.

2. The batsman is dismissed if:
a. He hits the ball and the other team’s player catches the ball.
b. He misses the ball and the ball hits the wickets after being thrown by the bowler.
c. He hits the ball and the other team’s player grabs the ball and hits the wickets with the ball before the running player reaches the other end of the pitch.

3. The bowler throws 6 balls at the batsman, which is known as an over. An over may be more than 6 balls if the bowler does any foul.

4. If the batsman successfully runs to the other side of the pitch after hitting a ball, one score is awarded to the team and if the ball hits the boundary of the field either 4 scores are awarded or 6. Four scores are awarded if the ball hits the boundary of the field after touching the ground and six scores are awarded if the ball hits the boundary of the field without touching the ground after being hit by the batsman.

5. The batting team is awarded one score if:
a. The bowler crosses a line on the ground (near the wickets) before he throws the ball. Its knows as ‘no ball’
b. The bowler bowls a bouncer that goes over the head of the batsman. This is known as ‘wide ball.’

Innings: Refers to one match where all batsmen are dismissed. Note: the term "innings" with an "s" is both the singular and plural form of this word when discussing cricket (but not in other uses, such as in baseball).

Over: An over consists of six balls bowled, excluding wides and no balls. Consecutive overs are delivered from opposite ends of the pitch. A bowler may not bowl two consecutive overs.

No ball: A ball can be a no ball for several reasons: if the bowler bowls from the wrong place, if he straightens his elbow during the delivery, if the bowling is dangerous, if the ball bounces more than twice or rolls along the ground before reaching the batsman, or if the fielders are standing in illegal places.

Wide ball: A ball is called wide when the bowler bowls a bouncer that goes over the head of the batsman. A wide adds one run to the batting team's score, in addition to any other runs which are scored off it.

Hit wicket: After the bowler has entered his delivery stride and while the ball is in play, if a batsman puts his wicket down by his bat or his equipment he is out.

Canada has a national cricket team as well as other teams, such as Team ‘A’, a national men and women under-19 team and a national under-15 team.

The eight provincial teams represent their respective provinces; only Ontario has two teams.
• Ontario
• Ontario B
• British Columbia
• Alberta
• Nova Scotia
• Quebec
• Manitoba
• Saskatchewan