Could We Play Cricket in the Rain?

If cricket
has a nemesis, it would be rain. 

Even the slightest whiff of
precipitation can be enough to send players and officials scuttling back into the pavilion and
the covers coming on.

It’s almost
laughable that the world’s second most popular sport can’t cope with H2O,
whilst other sports merrily continue when the weather takes a turn for the
worst.  

Although
rain only affects cricket in some countries (cough, cough, the UK), it can
cause matches to be drawn or cancelled altogether – meaning fans are deprived
of the game they love and, more importantly, teams can be denied crucial
victories.

It’s not
like we can politely ask the rain to stop and the weather gods will happily
oblige.

So what should
cricket do?

Should we
just keep losing huge chucks of matches because of the weather? Perhaps place
roofs on stadiums? Have reserve days? Settle it on the Play Station? Flip a coin?

All perfectly
viable solutions (well, most of them at least) – but couldn’t we just play in
the rain?

Some people label cricket as being ‘slow’ and ‘boring’, but cricket in the rain would
quite possibly be utter carnage.

Just imagine how
many times Jack Leach would have to wipe his glasses!

Bowlers
would struggle to grip a wet ball and it would go flying out of their hands in
all directions; head-high full tosses and wides squirting away to fine leg would all
be on the cards, keeping the fielders on their (soggy) toes. Wicket-keepers would need a wetsuit…

Cricket whites would be more like browns by the end of play, with players slipping around
on the wet outfield, turning the meticulously prepared pitches into giant oval
mud baths.

Batting
would be a struggle too; with the ball hardly bouncing, skidding everywhere and
being almost impossible to see. 

It truly would be a case of ‘hit and hope’. Even run machines like Steve
Smith and Ellyse Perry would have averages down in the low 30s soon enough, if
we decided to play cricket during heavy showers.

Perhaps
players could even decide to specialise their game to playing 
rain-cricket; perfecting a slip-proof run up could become a vital part of any young bowler’s development. We could see a Michael Phelps-sponsored Kookaburra ‘wet weather range’ coming to any good sports store near you – a must-have for any cricketer touring the British Isles in the near future…

Whilst some
may argue that playing in the rain gives an unfair advantage to whichever team
has better swimmers, if it’s almost impossible to either bat or bowl in the
rain, both teams would be equally disadvantaged, thus making it 100% fair.

Others may
argue that rain-cricket is thoroughly unsafe for both teams and whilst this may
be true, an extra element of risk could make the game all the more exciting. 

After all, even those that dislike cricket for whatever reason would surely be tempted by the prospect
of  – absolute soggy
chaos.  And cricket lovers would be able to watch the
game they love, no matter what the weather forecast says!

So, as fun
as it would be to see Ben Stokes take on David Warner in the ultimate ‘rock-paper-scissors’ showdown
to decide a crucial Ashes test, or the disgusted reaction of the Lords faithful
if a roof was to be built over the home of cricket, playing through the
downpour is surely the best solution to cricket’s nemesis, rain…

What do you think?

Thanks for
reading, hope this managed to bring a smile to your lips and stay tuned for
more (less soggy) cricket commentary.

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