The exact origins of cricket are not completely known. It has been around for centuries. Only recently has it evolved into the popular sport it is today. In modern times people all over the world currently enjoy placing bets on it. However, originally it would have been almost unrecognisable.
Historians believe that cricket was created by either the Normans or Saxons. It was originally a children’s game, played in woodlands and clearings throughout Sussex and Kent. The first known reference to it dates back to the late 16th century.
The Importance Of Cricket Gambling
During the time of Restoration, cricket gained a mass popularity. This was due to the abundance of betting at the time. In 1664 the Gambling Act came into effect. This new law meant that stakes were limited to £100.
Despite this seemingly low amount it was considered a fortune by 17th century standards. People were attracted by the prospect of winning such a high amount. Cricket became a significant sport to gamble on. Interestingly, new gambling laws continue to be passed, aimed at reducing sports betting. However, for centuries people have enjoyed placing wagers on cricket. This is likely to carry on in the future.
As a Children’s Game
Over many generations the game now known as cricket was played primarily by children. By the 17th century adults had taken it up as a recreational sport. Back then it shared similarities with bowls. The main difference between the two games was that in cricket the ball could be hit by bat.
The sport would have been played on land grazed by sheep. There is even some evidence that the balls were stones wrapped in sheep’s wool. Sticks or crooks could have been used as bats. Wickets may have been made from tree stumps or wooden gates.