Should Cricket Be Classed as an Extreme Sport?

Historically, cricket has long been called a gentleman’s game. The bat-and-ball game is based on deep-rooted rivalries, and a must win attitude. In the modern era, the game’s ferocity means that it’s not as passive and light-hearted as many people think. By definition, cricket isn’t an extreme sport, but the fast bowling, powerful boundary hitting, and acrobatic catches make it a must-watch spectacle. These factors create a fascinating discussion: Should cricket be classified as an extreme sport.

It is risky to face Pace Bowlers

For players and spectators alike, fast bowlers have long been one of cricket’s main attractions. The graceful run-up, power swing and perfectly timed release of the ball are all captivating entertainment. Not only do pace bowlers create edge-of-the-seat action, but they’re also incredibly threatening to batsmen. The pace bowlers generate such high speeds that Jofra Archer and Anrich Nortje often play during powerplay cricket.

The following information was available at the time of writing fastest delivery of all time sits at 161.5 kilometers per hour. These speeds were reached by Shoaib Akhtar when Pakistan faced England at the 2003 ICC World Cup. Few other sports repeatedly generate pace upwards of 150km/h, and that’s what makes cricket so extreme.

Batsmen still get hurt when they face pace bowlers, even though they wear padded gear. In the 2019 Ashes series, Australia’s Steve Smith got caught in the head by a 148.7km/h bouncer from Archer. The Baggy Green’s former captain had to be replaced by Marnus Labuschagne, who become the sport’s first concussion substitute.

All Roles are at Risk

Nowadays, the sport’s fastest bowlers are at the forefront of broadening cricket’s audience base. Unpredictability and mystery are key ingredients to cricket’s appeal. The bat-and-ball game is one of the world’s most popular sports, and its position within the sports betting industry reflects that.

The best bookmakers listed at cover an array of markets, and their cricket filter enables prospective bettors to search for offers relating to the all-action game. Bet365, for instance, offers sign-up bonuses and markets that include the Ashes Series as well as the Indian Premier League and T20 World Cup. The inclusion of short-format events on betting platforms speaks volumes to the excitement pace bowlers create.

However, it isn’t only batsmen who are susceptible to injuries. Upon unleashing at 150km/h delivery, run scorers occasionally seek to strike the ball back down the ground and over the bowler’s head. Some bowlers are lucky enough to be able to catch and bowl the opposition, there’s always a risk of being struck by a returning ball at high speeds. Because of this, pace can also be the bowler’s downfall.

Cricket is Extreme!

Cricket will never become an extreme sport. By definition, no. However, that shouldn’t detract from the game’s unique dangers. It is absurd for any sportsman or woman to stand in front a ball travelling at 150 km/h. But, for cricketers, it’s part and parcel of the sport.

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