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Cricket is a bat-and-ball game played between two teams of eleven players each on a cricket field, at the centre of which is a rectangular 22-yard-long pitch with a wicket at each end. The game is played by 120 million players in many countries, making it the world's second most popular sport after football.Cricket is a bat-and-ball game played between two teams of eleven players each on a cricket field, at the centre of which is a rectangular 22-yard-long pitch with a wicket at each end. The game is played by 120 million players in many countries, making it the world's second most popular sport after football.The batting side scores runs by striking the ball bowled at the wicket with the bat, while the bowling and fielding side tries to prevent this and dismiss each player (so they are "out"). Means of dismissal include being bowled, when the ball hits the stumps and dislodges the bails, and by the fielding side either catching the ball after it is hit by the bat, but before it hits the ground, or by hitting a wicket with the ball before a batsman has reached it. When ten of the eleven players have been dismissed, the innings ends and the teams swap roles. The game is adjudicated by two umpires, aided by a third umpire and match referee in international matches. They communicate with two off-field scorers who record the match's statistical information.Cricket has close historical ties with Australian rules football and many players have competed at top level in both sports.The sport is followed primarily in the Indian subcontinent, Australasia, the United Kingdom, southern Africa and the West Indies, its globalisation occurring during the expansion of the British Empire and remaining popular into the 21st century. Women's cricket, which is organised and played separately, has also achieved international standard. The most successful side playing international cricket is Australia, having won seven One Day International trophies, including five World Cups, more than any other country and having been the top-ranked Test side more than any other country.Cricket is one of many games in the "club ball" sphere that basically involve hitting a ball with a hand-held implement; others are baseball, golf, hockey, tennis, squash, badminton and table tennis. It is believed that cricket originated as a children's game in the south-eastern counties of England, sometime during the medieval period.A set of wickets laid out in a straight line is called a "pitch". The pitch is marked at each end by creases drawn on the surface of the ground. The creases are used to determine the mode of dismissal, as well as the bowler's and batsman's end of the pitch. The laws of cricket are maintained by the International Cricket Council and the Marylebone Cricket Club.Test cricket, the longest form of the sport, is played over five days, with each team allowed to play two innings of first-class cricket, restricted overs cricket or Twenty20 cricket. First-class cricket in England is played for the most part by the 18 county clubs which contest the County Championship. The concept of a champion county has existed since the 18th century but the official competition was not established until 1890. The most successful team in the County Championship has been Yorkshire, who have won the title 32 times.One Day International (ODI) cricket is played over 50 overs per side, and Twenty20 International (T20I) cricket is played over 20 overs per side. In both forms of the game, teams are allotted specific overs in which they must bowl their opponents out, or restrict them to a low enough score to win.Cricket is a legal sport in many countries, with professional leagues in some. However, in some countries it is considered a gambling game and is illegal. In others, like India, it is legal to bet on cricket matches, but only through licensed bookmakers. In still others, like the United Kingdom, cricket betting is only legal if the bets are placed on the day of the match, and not in advance.cricket betting apps
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