A Cricket

About.  A cricket (or list A cricket) is a type of one day cricket defined by the International Cricket Council (ICC) here.  In short, a game of cricket is classified as A cricket in the UK if it is a one day international or it is played by one of the 18 county level teams.  The definition is actually a little more complicated than that, but that's the bulk of it.  As mentioned previously, it's duration is one day and must consist of at least 40 overs (a set of 6 balls bowled) unlike the other one day variant of Twenty20 which is only required to have 20 overs.  As in Twenty20, the idea behind the one day format is to encourage risk taking by the batsmen in the hope of producing a more exciting game for the spectators. 

Watch
.  Unfortunately all live television coverage is only available via Sky Sports.  If you aren't lucky enough to have Sky Sports yourself then finding a local pub or a friend that does might be a good option.  You can however watch highlights online at ECB TV or you can listen to live coverage online, on your radio via BBC radio 5 live.  You can also find podcast coverage available via iTunes, a simple search for 'cricket' will turn up a number of good podcasts such as: ECB Cricket, Cricinfo and Twelfth Man amongst many others.

News
.  Unlike live visual footage, good free news sources are abundant online as a quick Google search on either 'cricket news' or 'cricket blog' will show.  The following sites will all do a good job of keeping you up to date with England international games and county cricket: the official fan community of England cricket at Twelfth Man, the Sky Sports news page, BBC cricket news, Cricket 365,  ESPN Cricinfo and The Guardian newspaper's cricket section.  I also find the following blogs to be very knowledgeable and entertaining: Cricket World, King Cricket and of course Cricket With Balls.

Fixtures
.  As cricket is played outside on an uncovered surface, adverse weather conditions such as rain (which stops play) or extremely cold temperatures can make playing the game unpractical.  For that reason the county cricket season runs across the summer months in the UK from the end of March through to mid September.  All England county and international level fixtures are listed on the ECB website along with the results of previous games.   International games can be played all year-round however as they can be played in the southern hemisphere away from the UK during our winter.

Teams
.  Of course there is our international side who you can find out about and follow via their ECB Twelfth Man website and also on Facebook.  Information on the 18 county level teams (which also include one Welsh team, Glamorgan) can be found via their websites listed in bullet points below.  The 18 county level teams are based on the main old English counties hence the reason we don't actually have one county level team for each of all the modern English counties today.

  • Derbyshire
  • Durham
  • Essex
  • Glamorgan
  • Gloucestershire
  • Hampshire
  • Kent
  • Lancashire
  • Leicestershire
  • Middlesex
  • Northamptonshire
  • Nottinghamshire
  • Somerset
  • Surrey
  • Sussex
  • Warwickshire
  • Worcestershire
  • Yorkshire

Tickets.  Tickets can be bought for all of the county games from the team websites listed above.  In addition, tickets can also be bought from the ECB website and Ticketmaster.