A common debate among all sports lovers not only in India but all around the world is on this very topic, Cricket Vs Football: Which one is more interesting? The popularity of Cricket Vs Football is another topic often pondered upon. Cricket and Football are loved and thoroughly followed worldwide, creating huge franchises around them and building humungous fan bases respectively.
In this article, we’ll dive straight into Football Vs Cricket in India, answer questions like Cricket Vs Football popularity and compare various elements of both the sports and see what makes them so interesting and whether Indian Cricket or Football is the fan-favorite.
A Little History Behind The Two Sports…
The British introduced Cricket as well as Football in India and that is undoubtedly one of the best things they could have done for our nation. Cricket was introduced in the early 1700s and the first match ever to be played in India was in 1721. On the other hand, Football was introduced in India in the mid-nineteenth century by the British soldiers. Even though these sports are not homegrown, they have caught the attention of every sports lover in the nation.
Hockey is the national sport of India and despite that, it does not come close to the amount of popularity Cricket and Football have gained in the nation. Arguments about Football Vs Cricket in India is more prominent rather than Hockey. Let’s look at the various aspects of both the sports and decide which one is more interesting.
Cricket Vs Football
1. Time Duration
Cricket and Football have very different time durations. There are three types of match formats in Cricket. The time duration for each of those varies from each other. They are as follows:
A test match is played over 5 days. the teams bowl a minimum of 90 overs per day except for the last day.
An ODI (One Day International) is completed in a single day as the name suggests. It lasts for about 8 hours long. The match consists of 50 overs.
This format of Cricket is the shortest among the 3 formats of Cricket. It lasts for about 3 hours. It comprises of two innings and each team bowls a maximum of 20 overs.
Switching over to football, there is only one fixed format. It is a 90 minute game with 2 halves of 45 minutes each. In the case of knockout matches, if there is a draw, both the teams play for an extra 30 minutes in halves of 15 minutes each.
So when it comes to time duration, it could be rather boring and time consuming to watch a game extended over a period of 5 days or even for 8 hours long. Whereas a good action-packed 90 minute game of Football or Twenty20 Match would be more interesting, exciting, and also the healthier option rather than sitting in front of a screen for hours together to watch a single match.
Football has a much simpler rule system as compared to Cricket. On the other hand, Cricket has many terms and rules. From LBW to No ball, wide ball, etc, the rules can get a little intimidating. This can get a little complicated for a viewer at first sight. Some might consider the complex rules to be interesting while some might just find it straight out confusing.
3. Kit and Designs
Cricket Vs Football Jersey designs in India are very different from each other. Football has one of the most intricate and well thought of designs when it comes to their kit and gear. The jerseys appeal to the eye and are extremely fashionable too
Contrastingly in Cricket, the jerseys are poles apart. Either it’s too plain, like in test match gear the entire kit is white and monotonous or the kit is outlandishly bright-colored like that of the IPL teams. The jerseys also have flashy font colors that are a little too bright to look at.
So if we’re looking at the popularity of Football Vs Cricket jerseys, Football has the upper hand cause imagine wearing an IPL jersey for a regular day of college. I doubt it would be very appealing, but everyone is entitled to their own choice of fashion.
4. Fan Support Cricket Vs Football
If you look at the support and fan following of Football Vs Cricket in India, it is massive for Cricket. The fans go crazy for this sport and their support for their respective teams can be seen through the yelling and painted faces all across the stadium.
Football has also been building a fan-base of its own in recent years with the introduction of the Indian Super League. Indian Football was not as actively supported as it is now with the Super League. The introduction of ISL has brought light to the nation’s supremely talented players.
Indian Football is still developing and has not yet reached its potential. Cricket is already full-fledged and out there. So in terms of fan support and popularity of Cricket Vs Football in India, Cricket is in the lead but not that Football is that far away. However on a Global scale Football arguably has the bigger fan-base.
A very interesting factor to point out in the debate of Football Vs Cricket in India is that though both sports are extremely demanding in terms of fitness, Cricket doesn’t demand its players to be in shape exactly. There are many cricketers that have a rather huge waistline.
On the flip-side Footballers are required to be running throughout the game as well as maintain tip-top shape. They are extremely fit and have immense stamina. Cricket doesn’t demand relentless running from its players as Football does.
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Football Vs Cricket tournaments in India is another big factor to consider while deciding which of the two is more interesting. There are several active and happening tournaments in the nation for Cricket as well as Football. ISL, I-League, and The Santosh Trophy are the most popular Football tournaments in the nation. The Indian Football team participates in various International tournaments like the AFC Cup, AFC Champions League, and of course prestigious Nehru Cup.
Cricket has the IPL, Ranji Trophy, Duleep Trophy, etc. On a global scale the there is the World Cup, Asia Cup, ICC T20 World Cup, and Champions trophy that the Indian national team actively participates in.
It’s not a hidden fact that both these sports have had their fair share of controversies. Another interesting Football Vs Cricket topic is controversy. Cricket in India has had more than a few stains on its name. The IPL match-fixing scandal was one of the very prominent and highly publicized controversies of Indian Cricket.
Apart from that, there have been incidents involving Cricket players off the pitch as well. Like very recently there was an outburst in the media regarding the statements of KL Rahul and Hardik Pandiya on the starstudded show Koffee with Karan.
Football in India hasn’t got that ugly yet but has experienced many on-field controversies that have created a buzz among the fans.
8. Football Vs Cricket Legends In India
Another point of comparison is, Cricket Vs Footballs’ interesting legends. India has produced some of the greatest sportsmen in the world when it comes to Cricket. Numerous legends like Sachin Tendulkar, MS Dhoni, Rahul Dravid, Sourav Ganguly have graced the sport over the years. They have gained popularity throughout the worldwide cricket fraternity. Not only Cricket fans but also every person that knows about the sport are in awe of these legends.
Similarly, Indian football legends have captured the hearts of millions across the nation. Our former Indian captain Bhaichung Bhutia has influenced his fans on and off the pitch as well. The current skipper Sunil Chhetri has also gone on to do wonders in Football and is the second-highest international goalscorer behind the global phenomenon Cristiano Ronaldo.
9. ISL vs IPL
Football Vs Cricket in India ultimately comes down to the nation’s interesting Premier Leagues, like the Indian Super League and the Indian Premier League.
The BCCI(Board of Control for Cricket In India) founded the IPL in 2008. Since its very start, it has been the talk of the town and has attracted players from all over the world to be a part of the teams contesting in this supreme league. The IPL follows the Twenty20 format and is full of intensity, overly enthusiastic fans, and an exhilarating atmosphere.
Founded in 2013 ISL follows a similar concept like IPL. The super league has also attracted players spread across borders to come and participate. It has hugely impacted the football scenario in India and has created numerous opportunities for aspiring players of the sport.
Both the money-driven tournaments are huge successes in their respective fields. They highlight homegrown talent at the highest level and watching those players showcase their skills is a proud moment for every Indian.
FAQs Regarding Cricket Vs Football
Cricket and Football both require a lot of hard work and dedication. However, Cricket has more rules than Football, so football is easier to understand.
Worldwide Football is more popular, but as of now in India Cricket is the popular option. Cricket is played everywhere and remains the most-watched sport in India. So when it comes to the popularity of Cricket Vs Football in India, Cricket is the winner.
Cricket is gaining popularity worldwide but Football is the world’s most famous sport. It is played by people across more than 200 countries.
Editor’s Note | Cricket Vs Football
Cricket/Football? I say both. We can bring out as many points of comparison on the popularity of as we like, but we can’t deny the fact that both the sports are extremely competitive and interesting to watch as well. The debate as to which is better than the other will never stop. We as lovers of sports should support both the games equally and if we haven’t watched either of the games yet, then we definitely should. It’s a promise that neither will let you down if you are looking for some action-packed, nail-biting competition. If we as fans give our unconditional support to the players of both sports, we will surely be looking at a bright future for our nation in sports. My final piece of advice would be, play the sport. Support the sport. Encourage the sport.