A commercialised version of the game 'rounders', popular among little girls in Britain and other commonwealth countries. Sri Lanka also had a similar game which they called 'ell-ey'.
In general, baseball is considered to be an American substitute for cricket. A 'baseball is to cricket what checkers is to chess' sort of thing.
Back in the 1700s in Boston (USA), cricket was played by English immigrants, particularly the ones that considered themselves to be upper class. But Boston had also acquired a plebeian and Irish flavour. The game of rounders, an earlier form of cricket which seems to have been favoured by the Irish, as well as by English children in the 16th century, became the game of choice among the youth.
The Boston cricketers of the time encouraged rounders as a secondary diversion, and even allowed it to be played in their cricket fields by those who preferred an alternative to the more formal sport of cricket. So 'early baseball' (ie US Rounders) grew up in the USA under cricket's benign umbrella. It stayed that way for about the first hundred years of its existence.
By the 1900s, cricket and baseball were looking far more different from each other than in baseball's earlier years. And by that time, it had become an issue of "cricket OR baseball" in the USA...and everyone knows what happened.
"I am a former collegiate baseball player who was always curious about cricket, but never found the time, or the avenue, to explore it - until Fox Sports World broadcast Zimbabwe in India, five years ago. The intricacies of the game speak to the strategic, patient baseball fan within me."
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