Cricket is not just a game, it is an emotion that connects everyone. And perhaps, the only emotion that binds an India and a Pakistani, now. The way cricket is cherished, celebrated and worshiped in India is immeasurable, and it is rightly said; cricket humaari mitti mein hai.
Though we have always been a mad cricketing nation, this beautiful game originated from the west. To be precise, it was discovered around 1550. Yup, it is that old.
Earlier, it was famously played in Tests format, and it was only in 1971, the limited over format was introduced. And, surprisingly, this change happened very incidentally.
It was a test match between Australia and England at the MCG ground, Melbourne. The first three days of the game were abandoned due to heavy rain. With all tickets sold and no spectators, the Melbourne authorities faced £80,000 loss.
Hence, to give the public something to watch, a one-day game was held, consisting of 40 eight-ball overs per side. And that is how the first ODI was played on 5 January 1971, and Australia won this match.
Here is the scoreboard:
Before the start of the match, Sir Don Bradman, called the players together and standing on a bench, gave them a short speech. At the end, he addressed the crowd and told them,”You have seen history made.”
And the history was, indeed, made.