Only a few people in the world are ignorant of the sport called cricket. And although the ones who know about it may not all be fans or know how it’s played, they are aware of the game nonetheless. Over the years, it has become a popular sport that easily climbs into second place as the most popular sport globally.

Cricket, otherwise known as a gentlemen’s game, is played on a field by two teams of 11 players each. The sport is particularly popular in England, Southern Africa, Australia, and the Indian subcontinent. Cricket is also a versatile sport that can be played in different formats, including T20 and One Day International (ODI).

Brief History of Cricket

Cricket’s history can be traced back to England in the 16th century. By the 18th century, it was the English national sport. The spread came from the English capturing war areas and colonizing many parts of the world.

The sport has competitive gameplay, requiring players to stay on top of their game and maintain physical and mental health. As a team sport, it’s also crucial for the players to work together like a well-oiled machine and develop team spirit.

Cricketers

The sport is played by athletes known as cricketers. Due to the massive following and fandom behind cricket, cricketers often achieve global acclaim like other athletes such as soccer and basketball players. They are also among the highest-paid athletes, with many sponsorships and endorsements, cementing their place as influencers.

This reverence from fans also makes them objects of fan engagement in terms of gambling. Fans are more likely to stake on games involving their favorite cricketers, which has increased the permeation of cricket into many online casinos. Among betting platforms, the website 10CRIC offers the best live betting options, allowing fans to stake online on events as they occur in the real world. This further improves the popularity of cricketers and adds to their PR.

Famous Persons to Play the Sport

Here are some of the most famous cricket players globally:

Chris Gayle

Chris Gayle made history as one of the best and most famous athletes to play cricket. He represented the West Indies Cricket and was known for his infamous left-handed batting. Gayle captained the outfit for three years, within which he made his mark as one of the most refined in the game. He single-handedly contributed 205 for the West Indies to run out winners in the ICC T20 World Cup semi-final against Australia. By the end of the tournament, he was the only player to hit that number.

Gayle is one of the four cricketers who have successfully pulled off two triple centuries at the Test level: 333 against Sri Lanka in 2010 and 317 against South Africa. The electric batsman is also the first in his position to bag a century in the T20 internationals and a significant factor in the T20 World Cup win for the West Indies.

M.S. Dhoni

Mahendra Singh Dhoni is one of the most famous names in world cricket, the wicketkeeper-batsman, who made history as Captain Cool, was the definition of an elite player. Outside his solo cricketing career, Dhoni also made a name for himself as the most successful player to captain the Indian Cricket Team (ICT) in three different formats of cricket, including test games, ODI, and Twenty20.

Additionally, he also captained the Chennai Super Kings, an IPL outfit. During his time as the ICT captain, Dhoni led them to the ICC World Twenty20 in 2007 and the ICC ODI Cricket World Cup in 2011. Between 2008 and 2009, he focused on breaking records by becoming the first Indian player to win the ICC ODI player of the year award for two years running.

Dhoni had bagged many awards by the end of his illustrious career, including the Padma Shri in 2009 (the fourth-highest honor conferred to civilians) and the Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award. By 2011, he was listed in the TIME 100 list of the most influential people of the year. According to SportsPro, Dhoni ranks 16th on the list of outstanding athletes globally.

Don Bradman

Sir Donald “The Don” George Bradman was an international cricketer born in Melbourne, Victoria in Australia. He had one of the most unrivaled batting averages of his time, raking up 99.84 hits—a record that remains the best feat managed by any athlete from any major sport. Don Bradman is deemed the best batsman ever to play.

During his career, he has successfully broken multiple world records, some of which remain unrivaled to date. He passed away in 2000 and was inducted into the International Cricket Council’s Cricket Hall of Fame in 2009, despite being denied previously.

Virat Kohli

Virat Kohli was another captain of the Indian Cricket Team who made history during his time on the team. He has the best physique on this list and an aggressive batting style that spurred his slew of records and milestones. Kohli was also a contributing member to the title-winning ICT side at the 2011 T20 World Cup.

Like Dhoni, Virat Kohli had also received the Padma Shri award. Other awards like the Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna award and the Arjuna Award testify of just how outstanding he was as a player. Kohli has won more awards than these, thanks to his electric form.

Brian Lara

Brian Lara is another face from the West Indies, famously nicknamed “The Prince” or “The Prince of Port of Spain.”

He’s considered one of the finest batters to ever play the sport, with his test batting rankings topping several charts and breaking multiple records in the sport.

Lara still holds the record for the highest solo score in a Test inning. This feat comes after bagging 400 not out in 2004 against a devastated English side that struggled to keep up at Antigua. Before that record, Lara managed to break the record of 375 runs in an inning for his era.

Shahid Afridi

Shahid Afridi is a Pakistani player with a successful portfolio and global fame. He has one of the most aggressive batting styles of the cricketers on this list, which earned him a lot of acclaim during his playing days. Afridi is one of the few players to hit a century in record time during a One-Day International match, taking only 37 balls to clinch the record. He further broke a record for hitting 32 runs in one over.