Pearls of the Past: Cricket Pitch Comes to Commissioners Park

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Take a stroll through Commissioners Park during the weekend and you’ll likely see plenty of soccer, lacrosse, baseball, and basketball, but there’s one sport that may be particularly eye-catching.

Since 2008, the Naperville Park District has run not just the city’s only cricket pitch but the country’s only park district-sponsored cricket pitch.

Born in 16th century England, Americans often compare it to baseball, but with 11 players per team. An area in the middle of the field acts as a path and batter’s box for the batter to score runs. Each team gets one inning to rack up as many points before all batters get out or they go through its designated number of balls.

When the park district introduced the sport in 2008, Naperville had five cricket teams. As it gained steam, another cricket facility opened at Nike Sports Complex and today there are now 13 teams.