By Audrey Clark
NOT AMERICA – With the 2022 MLB season underway, the International Cricket Council has released its annual desperate plea for literally anyone, anywhere in the United States of America, to give one single fuck about cricket.
“I don’t know what we’re doing wrong,” said ICC Chairman Greg Barclay, in his cute little New Zealand accent, “We’re the second most popular sport in the world, for god’s sake. We have billions of fans. Literally billions. How is it possible that not a single American wants to watch this shit?”
This year marks the 246th consecutive year of cricket organizations trying and failing to develop any kind of foothold in American culture.
“It just doesn’t make sense,” said former player Sachin Tendulkar, who I think played for, like, the Indian Red Sox or something, “The sport of cricket is beloved across the globe. Why does that love stop dead at the US border?”
“I’m incredibly famous, by the way,” Tendulkar added, “I don’t know what the ‘Indian Red Sox’ is supposed to be, but I was the former captain of the Indian National Team, and I’m commonly regarded as one of the greatest batsmen to ever live. Which you’d know if you were from any other country.”
As usual, the ICC offered a list of possible compromises to try and make cricket more appealing to a US audience.
“We’ll do anything,” said ICC General Manager Geoff Allardice, “Usually test matches last five days, but focus groups said that was too long, so we invented Twenty20, which cuts them down to three hours. Do you want us to go shorter? We can go shorter! How about thirty-minute matches? Ten minutes? Hell, we’ll fit a match in five seconds if it’ll make you fuckers watch it.”
The ICC’s list of proposed changes also included rounder bats (“like baseball!”), increasing the number of wickets from two to four (“like baseball!”) and replacing the cricket ball with a baseball (“seriously, why do you guys love baseball so much? What’s the difference?”)
“Is it the name?” said Barclay, “Because we could ditch ‘cricket,’ if you think it’s too silly. How about ‘batball?’ Or ‘smackfight?’ I’m really just throwing shit at the wall at this point.”
Major League Cricket is currently scheduled to launch in 2023, but it remains to be seen whether general interest will pick up at all before then. For the ICC, things seem hopeless.
“It feels like we’re out for a duck,” said Barclay, which was met with absolute dead silence, before he clarified, “That’s a bad thing.”