1st Edition

Cricket in the 21st Century

Edited By Souvik Naha, Dominic Malcolm Copyright 2024

    This book examines the ways in which cricket has reflected and reproduced some of the social and political tensions of the twenty-first century.

    Cricket’s struggle for global recognition and the shifting concerns about cricket’s perceived ‘character’ provide two of the most significant meta-narratives to shape the game’s historical and future development. However, in contrast to the degree of continuity these narratives appear to support, the game is currently undergoing a particularly rapid and radical phase of change. This book illustrates some of these dominant processes, that can be broadly categorized as the changing political economy of the game, the nation-specific manifestations of cricket’s political-economic landscape, and the intro- and retrospection within the English game. Cricket is not only thriving across the world, its global spread reveals narratives of migration, national and international politics, astute governance, empowerment of people, and cultural practices of everyday life. New ethical, political, and identity-related concerns have arisen with the reworking of the objectives and methods of playing and watching cricket. The chapters in this volume employ cricket as a useful conceptual tool to analyse the dynamics underwriting interactions between races, sexes, classes, and polities.

    Cricket in the 21st Century will be a fascinating read for students, scholars as well as general readers with an interest in the sociology and history of sport and global political economy. The chapters in this book were originally published as a special issue of Sport in Society.

    Introduction: Cricket at the beginning of the long twenty-first century

    Souvik Naha and Dominic Malcolm


    Part I - Emerging Networks in Global Cricket


    1. Cricket, Brexit and the Anglosphere

    Dominic Malcolm


    2. Capitalism and the ethics of sport governance: a history of the board of control for cricket in India

    Avipsu Halder


    3. From idyllic past-time to spectacle of accelerated intensity: televisual technologies in contemporary cricket

    Damion Sturm


    4. Flight of fantasy or reflections of passion? Knowledge, skill and fantasy cricket

    Souvik Naha


    5. Maidens and Man-kads: gendering cricket scholarship in the 21st century

    Rafaelle Nicholson


    Part II - Shifting Topographies of National Cricket


    6. Cricket, terrorism and security in contemporary South Asia

    Kausik Bandyopadhyay


    7. The development of cricket in China

    Boyang He and Dominic Malcolm


    8. Beyond the boundary: the Sandpapergate scandal and the limits of transnational masculinity

    John Hughson and Marina Hughson


    9. Cricket, society and religion: a study of increasing religiosity in the national cricket team of Pakistan

    Ali Khan


    10. No-ball! When transformation, indigenization and politicking overstepped into Zimbabwean cricket

    Admire Thonje


    11. Quotas in South African cricket: what the players say

    Mary-Ann Dove, Janine Gray, Mogammad S. Taliep and Catherine E. Draper


    Part III - Negotiating Diversity in English Cricket


    12. Towards a safer past: thoughts on the invocation of English cricket’s soul

    Stephen Wagg


    13. “The ‘blazer boys’ were getting all the chances”: South Asian men’s experiences of cricket coaching in England

    Thomas Fletcher, David Piggott and Julian North


    14. Inclusionary and exclusionary banter: English club cricket, inclusive attitudes and male camaraderie

    William Lawless and Rory Magrath


    15. Cricket has no boundaries with NatWest? The hyperreality of inclusion and diversity in English cricket

    Ben Powis and Philippa Velija


    Souvik Naha is Senior Lecturer in Imperial and Post-colonial History at the University of Glasgow, Scotland. He has published extensively in colonial and postcolonial history, including a monograph and several edited journal special issues. He is the Joint Executive Academic Editor of Sport in Society and Associate Editor of Sport in History.

    Dominic Malcolm is Professor of Sociology of Sport in the School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences, Loughborough University, England. He has authored 5 monographs, edited 9 anthologies and written over 100 journal articles and book chapters. He is the Editor-in-Chief of International Review for the Sociology of Sport.