Cricket came to Africa due to British presence around the 18th and 19th centuries. Despite the sport’s longevity, it’s yet to gain prominence compared to sports like football, rugby and athletics. That said, several countries participate in the sport and have a considerable rate of success in it. These are the African countries where cricket is most popular.
People Also Read: 9 NFL Players From Africa You Should Know
South Africa is one of the most successful countries in cricket. It has a long history of participation in international, continental and local tournaments. The first match ever played dates back to 1808. In 1843, the oldest cricket club in South Africa, the Port Elizabeth Cricket Club, was formed.
From then, the game spread to the inner communities and in 1876, Port Elizabeth organised a tournament between the towns. These practices lay a solid foundation for the sport in the country. Over the years, South Africa emerged as a competitive cricket nation. That said, its momentum was derailed after it was kicked out of the sport due to apartheid policies.
South Africa was reinstated in 1991 and was renamed from Springboks to the Proteas. The first country it played after the return was India. They quickly became elite and attended their first World Cup in 1992. The team hasn’t been able to win the title. However, the team was ranked first in the world in 2007.
People Also Read: Muhammad Ali’s Record. How Good Was He?
Zimbabwe’s political upheavals have greatly interfered with cricket. They seemingly had a great start with its admission to the International Cricket Council (ICC) in 1992 and playing a test match against India.
All that unravelled with the government’s interference in the sport. Picking players based on their race saw the retirement of several high-profile players and, consequently, a dip in their international status.
Join our Spotcovery Global Black Community Facebook Group for early access to exclusive content and to share in a lively discussion.
Cricket in Zambia
Cricket has a growing presence in Zambia. It was introduced in the country in 1900. During its early years, expatriates largely played the game due to the exclusion of black people by the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland.
In 1964, the Zambia Cricket Union (ZCU)came into being and opened up to the population. Its national team played its first-ever international game in 1968 against Kenya.
Over the years, the ZCU has introduced cricket to institutions to popularise it. They have managed to do this to a certain degree but efforts continue.
That said, Zambia has developed national teams across different age groups; U13, U15, U17 and U19. In 2003, they became the International Cricket Council (ICC) members. The following year, it hosted the Africa Cup Cricket Tournament and qualified for an ICC-sanctioned event.
Other African countries where cricket is played include Tanzania, Kenya, Namibia, Nigeria and Botswana, but it’s not as popular.
Nearly 80% of consumers visit directories with reviews to find a local business. List your business for free in our exclusive Spotcovery Black-Owned Business Directory.
Spotcovery offers unique and fresh daily content on Black culture, lifestyle, and experiences. We talk about everything black, black people, black-owned and black-owned businesses. We also deliver authentic and relevant content that will inform, inspire and empower you! The future of black media is critical to today’s black experience! Our primary audience includes African American, African, Afro-Caribbean, and people of African heritage. Black culture is for the culture!