In an interesting development, Russia refuses to recognize cricket as a ‘sport’
Cricket is not a sport, says Russia.
Regardless of having millions of followers worldwide, Russia is unready to accept cricket as a sport.
During the time when ICC World Cup 2019 was being watched across the globe, the Russian Sports Ministry turned down the appeal for cricket to be recognized as an official sport in the country. As reported by the Russian news media outlet ‘RT’, the ministry denied the appeal and the reason being was that it lacked regional affiliations in the country.
‘’This time we didn’t fully prepare the documents, there were some technical issues. We need to open more regional affiliations. Right now there are around 20, and we need 48’’ – Aleksandr Sokorin, Moscow Cricket Federation member, said.
‘’Over the next year, we plan to open the remaining regional affiliations and again send an application. Right now they haven’t recognized us because of this technicality, but next year everything should be fine’’ – he added.
Taking into account that the country identifies sports yoga, model plane flying, and footgolf as official sports, this decision of not considering cricket an ‘official’ sport came as a big surprise to many people.
Game of ‘bourgeois’
As per the International Cricket Council, the first-ever cricket matches in the country were played back in the 1870s in St. Petersburg. A decade later, cricket gained a lot of popularity but its progression halted during the Communist Revolution in 1917. However, this was done because it was seen as a game of ‘bourgeois’.
A few famous sports in Russia are ice hockey, gymnastics, basketball, and football. The country even hosted the FIFA World Cup 2018. A great amount of significance is given to Olympic sports and the country has been amongst the medals in the biggest sporting extravaganza in the world a number of times. If the efforts that were made in the past to include cricket in the Olympics were successful, a big burst of it would’ve been witnessed in the country.
But for now, enthusiasts of cricket hope they can go on all the way on their own as well.
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