It is normal to notice similarities and differences when watching or playing different sports. While some similarities and differences can be subtle, others are more obvious and are the main distinguishers between the two sports. Ever wondered if there were any similarities between football and cricket? What are the main factors that distinguish cricket from football?
Both Football and Cricket are team games. Each side has 11 players. The key differences between Cricket & Football are the field’s size and shape, ball size and hardness, and type of protective gear. There is no goalpost in Cricket, while there is one in Football.
Although you should be familiar with the basics of both games, this article will highlight some similarities and key differences.
The Differences Between Cricket and Football
Let’s start by looking at the main differences between Cricket and Football.
1. Popularity, Viewership, and Playing Countries
Football is also known as Soccer (mainly American) or Association Football. It is the most watched game in the world. Even though there is a platform Pirlotv which is mostly used for watching the football, In 2018, 3.5 billion people watched the FIFA World Cup, which is the most popular football tournament. Nearly all countries play football.
The second most popular game, cricket, has a wide global reach. However, international cricket matches are only played in a few countries.
Only 12 teams have been granted affiliations to play Test matches. Twenty countries are allowed to play One-Day International matches. However, Twenty-20 is growing in popularity and reaching a wider audience. Twenty-20 games are played by 85 countries.
There are approximately 2.5 billion cricket fans. About 2.6 billion people watched the Cricket World Cup in 2019.
2. Ground Shape and Size
A football pitch or football field is rectangular. Cricket fields are generally oval or circular. Both sports have a variable field area.
The football field is 100-130 yards long (90-120m) and 50-100 yards wide (45-90m). The penalty area, or the box, which is where the majority of the action occurs, is 18 meters (16.46 meters), away from the goal line. The penalty spot, however, is 12 yards (10.98 metres) away.
Size of a Cricket Field (Image Credit: Hemant Brar).
According to the ICC Test Match Standard Playing conditions (October 2014) Law 19.1, the cricket field’s diameter can vary between 137m and 150m. According to the law, the minimum distance between the boundary and the boundary square of a pitch must be at least 137.16 m. The shorter of the two boundaries cannot be smaller than 59.43 meter. At least 64 meters should be the distance between the boundary and the pitch’s center. The boundaries must not extend beyond 82.29 m from the pitch’s center.
3. Uniform and color
Football players are required to wear sleeves, shorts, and socks. To distinguish the players from their opponents, the cloth colors must be different. The teams will usually have several sets of clothes and choose one set according to the rules.
Cricket clothing includes a collared shirt, with either short sleeves or long sleeves, depending on the weather or personal preference, full-length trousers, a sun hat, cap, or sun visor, as well as spiked shoes. A pullover or a jumper can be worn by the players. Limited games can be played in bright colors, while Test matches are in white.
4 – Playing and Protective Equipment
You need three things to play cricket: a bat, a bowl, and stumps. Football, on the other hand, uses a bigger and more flexible ball than a cricket ball. To score runs in cricket, batsmen use a wooden bat to hit the ball, while football players push the ball into the goalpost with any other body part.
The material and dimensions of the ball used will vary.
The synthetic leather used to make the football balls is spherical. The balls used in professional matches must have a circumference of 68 cm (27″) and 70 cm (28) inches, and a diameter 22 cm (8.65″) according to FIFA law 2. It can weigh between 410 and 450 grams.
The cricket balls are made of leather, cork, and a thread. The diameter of a Cricket bat for men is 7.13 cm (2.80 inches) to 7.29cm (2.86 inches) and the circumference is 22.4 cm (8.81 to 22.9cm (9 inches). It can weigh between 155.9 and 163 grams.
Protective equipment is worn by cricket batsmen, wicketkeepers and close-in fielders. These protective equipment include gloves, helmets, knee pads, gloves, jockstraps and other guards.
The players in football wear stockings, slip shorts and mouth guards.
5 – Playing and Scoring Formats
A typical football match is split into two halves, each lasting 45 minutes. Each half ends with a few minutes of stoppage (injury) added. Matches are won by the team with the most goals.
If the goals of both teams are equal at the end, depending on the rules, the result may be decided by extra time (30 minutes) or a penalty shootout. It is usually a game of defense versus attack, or an attacker’s kick shot or shot against the goalkeeper’s dive save.
It’s all about runs and wickets. The bowlers give the batsman the ball to stop him from scoring runs. Meanwhile, the opposing batsmen aim to hit the balls and score runs.
Limited-over formats allow for the first team to post some runs, which is called the target. The match is won if the other team reaches the target within the allotted time.
Test matches are played for five days and each side bats twice. There are no limitations on the number of overs.
In cricket, unlike football, only the bowling team has 11 players on the field. Only two batsmen are allowed to stay on the field with the batting team. The game is followed by substitutes and other players from the dugout or dressing room.
6 – The Rule of Substitutes
It is likely that you have seen a substitute football player score a goal, keep the ball in check, or even lead the team. Mario Gotze, a substitute player in FIFA 2014’s world cup final, scored the winning goal in the 113th minutes.
Substitutes in cricket are not permitted to play as a bowler, batsmen, wicketkeepers, or captains. They are only allowed to replace injured players. Once the injury is healed, the original player may return to the field.\
Also read: What is the real meaning of fitness?
7 – Red/Yellow Penalty Card
This is one major difference between the two sports. Football uses yellow and red cards to discipline players who are found guilty of misconduct.
A yellow card can be used to warn of minor misconduct. A red card will result in the player being removed from the field and the side being forced to play less with the player. A player can receive two yellow cards in a single game.
Although cricket players can be fined for any misconduct, the penalty card system was not in place until 2017. A new law was passed in 2017 that allows umpires and officials to issue red cards to cricketers who commit serious offenses, such as assaulting or threatening umpires, other players, umpires, officials, spectators, or any other violence on the field. Cricket does not have yellow penalties.
Some similarities between Cricket and Football?
There are some similarities between the two sports. The two most popular games in the world are Cricket and Football. Both can be played outdoors or on the field.
Each match has 11 players. There are many similarities between the two games, including the use of the balls, substitute players, and keepers (goalkeeper or wicketkeeper), who save the ball with their gloves.
Referees in football work in a similar way to cricket umpires. One referee in football and two assistant referees are used, while cricket has two field umpires as well as one television umpire.
While cricket is referred to as a gentlemen’s game, football can be quite rough at times. This is the nature of both games. Even though cricket is played in less countries, it has enjoyed a tremendous fan-following and viewership, mainly from Australia, England, and the Indian subcontinent.
The legendary cricket batsman Sachin Tulkar is revered by cricket fans. However, Lionel Messi (and Cristiano Ronaldo) have gained incredible popularity and respect through their football careers. These players are a major contributor to any sport’s worldwide popularity. These are two of the most popular sports in the world!