Cricket for Blind and Partially Sighted People has been played since the 40s in England & Wales.
The sport offers solidarity and a chance to contest on equal terms for blind and partially sighted people.
All players are registered blind or partially sighted. Out of the 11 players, a minimum of 4 must be totally blind.
British Blind Sport are responsible for running the England Blind Cricket team who have represented the England and Wales Cricket Board in two Blind Cricket World Cups. The team have toured Australia, Sri Lanka and the West Indies, as well as playing in two world cups in India and hosting Pakistan and Australia.
England won the first Blind Cricket Ashes in 2004 and since then the England Blind Cricket team have won both series they’ve played, away to both the West Indies and Sri Lanka.
The main difference between standard Cricket and Blind Cricket is the ball. A size three football is used in UK Blind Cricket to help the partially sighted players to see it and it is filled with a quantity of ball bearings to allow the totally blind players to hear it. The MCC Laws of Cricket have also been adapted in other ways in an attempt to allow blind and partially sighted people to compete on equal terms. The major variations are as follows:
The wicket is larger, making it easier for the partially sighted players to see and easier for a Batsman or Bowler to touch for the purpose of orientatation.
The ball must pitch at least twice before the crease of a totally blind Batsman but must not be rolling.
The ball must pitch at least once before the crease of a partially sighted Batsman.
A totally blind Batsman is given one chance before being given out LBW and cannot be stumped.
The Bowler must ask the Batsman if he is ready before beginning his run up and shout “play” as he releases the ball.
A totally blind Fielder can make a catch after the ball has bounced once.
Because of the nationwide and international scope of this sport BBS are always looking for new sponsors to help support the work of the Cricket Committee and provide opportunity and encouragement to young visually impaired cricketers. Volunteer Umpires and Scorers are always welcome. If you’d like to get involved as a sponsor Click Here
PS For any incredibly cynical people out there, NO, this isn’t a sponsored post, I just saw a clip on cricket for blind and partially sighted people on the news, and wanted to give them a little link-love on my blog.