United States national cricket team

United States
Association USACA
ICC status Associate member (1965)
ICC region ICC Americas
WCL Division 3
Coach Pubudu Dassanayake
Captain Steven Taylor
First international
United States United States v. Canada 
(New York; September 24, 1844)
World Cup Qualifier
Appearances 8 (first in 1979)
Best result Seventh (2001)
World Twenty20 Qualifier
Appearances 4 (first in 2010)
Best result Sixth (2010)
As of 10 September 2016

The United States national cricket team represents the United States in international cricket. The team is organised by the United States of America Cricket Association (USACA), which became a member of the International Cricket Council (ICC) in 1965. However, the organisation has had its membership suspended since 2015 following the ICC's concerns about the USACA's governance and finances.[1]

A U.S. representative team was a participant in the first international cricket match, played against Canada in 1844. However, until the late 20th century the U.S. national team made only infrequent appearances against other international teams, generally only playing against Canada (in the annual Auty Cup) or against touring teams. The U.S. made its international tournament debut at the 1979 ICC Trophy in England, and since then has missed only two editions of the tournament (now known as the World Cup Qualifier). After winning the 2004 ICC Six Nations Challenge, the team qualified for the 2004 ICC Champions Trophy, playing its sole One Day International (ODI) matches to date. In the World Cricket League, the U.S. has qualified for the 2016 Division Four tournament. The team's current head coach is Pubudu Dassanayake.



The British brought cricket to the Thirteen Colonies in the early 18th century. Cricket further grew in the 18th century.[2] It is understood from anecdotal evidence that George Washington was a strong supporter of cricket, participating on at least one occasion in a game of cricket with his troops at Valley Forge during the American Revolution.[3] John Adams was recorded as saying in Congress that if leaders of cricket clubs could be called "presidents", there was no reason why the leader of the new nation could not be called the same.[4]

In 1844, the United States participated in the first international cricket match. This was played against Canada at the St George's Cricket Club Ground, Bloomingdale Park, New York.[5] This first international sporting event was attended by 20,000 people and established the longest international sporting rivalry in the modern era.[6] Wagers of around $120,000 were placed on the outcome of the match. This is equivalent to around $1.5 million in 2007.[7][8]

Sides from England toured North America (taking in both the USA and Canada) following the English cricket seasons of 1859, 1868 and 1872. These were organized as purely commercial ventures. Most of the matches of these early touring teams were played "against odds", that is to say the home team was permitted to have more than eleven players (usually twenty-two) in order to make a more even contest.[9]


In spite of cricket's popularity in the 18th and early 19th centuries, the game was supplanted by baseball in the 1850s and 1860s. As interest in baseball rose, the rules of that game were changed slightly to increase its popularity. For example, easily manufactured round bats were introduced to contrast the flat bats of cricket.[10]

Another reason for cricket's decline in popularity may be that in the late 19th century American cricket remained an amateur sport reserved for the wealthy while England and Australia were developing a professional version of the game. As cricket standards improved with professionalism elsewhere in the world many North American cricket clubs stayed stubbornly elitist. Clubs such as Philadelphia and Merion abandoned cricket and converted their facilities to other sports. Some city cricket clubs unknowingly contributed to their own demise by sponsoring auxiliary baseball teams. By 1900 baseball had taken over the American scene and created its independent mythology. The formation of the Imperial Cricket Conference in 1909 also helped to keep the popularity of the game down. It certainly undercut any momentum to professionalize cricket in the USA, although whether the momentum would have developed even in the presence of a more open ICC remains a question.[5] Regardless of its cause, the game did not flourish in the United States the way it did in the British Empire. From the 1880s until the outbreak of World War I, the American game was dominated not by the national side, but by an amateur team from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Philadelphian cricket

The Philadelphian cricket team, shown here on an 1884 tour of England, were the premier American cricket team for several decades after the US Civil War

The Philadelphian cricket team was a team that represented Philadelphia in first-class cricket between 1878 and 1913. Even though the United States had played the first ever international cricket match against Canada in 1844, the sport began a slow decline in the country.[11] This decline was furthered by the rise in popularity of baseball. In Philadelphia, however, the sport remained very popular and from the end of the 19th century until the outbreak of World War I, the city produced a first class team that rivaled many others in the world. The team was composed of players from the four chief cricket clubs in Philadelphia–Germantown, Merion, Belmont, and Philadelphia. Players from smaller clubs, such as Tioga and Moorestown, and local colleges, such as Haverford and Penn, also played for the Philadelphians. Over its 35 years, the team played in 89 first-class cricket matches. Of those, 29 were won, 46 were lost, 13 were drawn and one game was abandoned before completion.[12]

Arguably, the greatest American cricketer ever played for Philadelphia during this period. John Barton King was a very skilled batsman, but really proved his worth as a bowler. During his career, he set numerous records in North America and at least one first-class bowling record.[13] He competed with and succeeded against the best cricketers in the world from England and Australia. King was the dominant bowler on his team when it toured England in 1897, 1903, and 1908. He dismissed batsmen with his unique delivery, which he called "the angler", and helped to perfect swing bowling in the sport. Many of the great bowlers of today still use the strategies and techniques that he developed.[14] Sir Pelham Warner described Bart King as one of the finest bowlers of all time,[15] and Donald Bradman called him "America's greatest cricketing son."[16]

On June 28, 1913 the Philadelphians played the last first-class game on the mainland for more than 90 years. Games were played in the US Virgin Islands in the interim, which is considered as part of the West Indies by the ICC. The team had played an American national side 6 times between 1885 and 1894. The United States team won one of these matches, lost two, and earned a draw in three. Cricket remained a minor pastime in the United States until the mid-1960s, when ICC reforms allowed associate members to join.

Status from 1965

In 1965, Clifford Severn made his USA debut at 39, alongside his young brother Winston, in a two-day match against Canada at Calgary's Riley Park as part of the longest running international rivalry in international cricket, now known as the Auty Cup. A year later in the return contest at the C Aubrey Smith field in Los Angeles, USA won by 54 runs.[17]

In 1965, the Imperial Cricket Conference changed its name to the International Cricket Conference. In addition, new rules were adopted to permit the election of countries from outside the Commonwealth. This led to the expansion of the Conference, with the admission of Associate Members, including the United States. Today cricket is played in all fifty states.[18]

The USA have played in every edition of the ICC Trophy, though they didn't pass the first round until the 1990 tournament in the Netherlands. They reached the plate final of the 1994 tournament, but opted not to play due to prior travel arrangements. They finished twelfth in 1997.

21st century


USA finished sixth in the 2001 ICC Trophy, their best performance to date. They have also played in every edition of the ICC Americas Championship, winning in 2002.[19]

In 2004, the United States cricket team played a first-class match as part of the first ICC Intercontinental Cup. The matches against Canada and Bermuda were the first in many years.[19] The team won the ICC 6 Nations Challenge beating Scotland, Namibia, the Netherlands, and the UAE on net run rate by 0.028 of a run.[20]

Winning the ICC Six Nations meant that they qualified for the ICC Champions Trophy 2004 in England. Here the USA played their first ever One Day International match against New Zealand at The Oval on September 10, 2004.[21] The US side was beaten by New Zealand and lost to Australia in the tournament, as well.[22]

The 2005 ICC Trophy represented a chance for the USA to re-establish themselves on the world stage and qualify for the 2007 World Cup. A poor showing saw them finish at the bottom of their group, with four losses and a match abandoned due to rain from their five group fixtures. This failure robbed the USA of the prize of full One Day International status on offer to the World Cup qualifiers.[19] This failure was compounded on August 9, 2005 when the ICC expelled the USA from the 2005 ICC Intercontinental Cup.[23]

The USA made their return to international cricket in August 2006 when they participated in Division One of the ICC Americas Championship in Canada.[24] They finished second in the five team tournament.[25]

In May 2007 the USA were to visit Darwin, Australia to take part in Division Three of the ICC World Cricket League.[26] A top two finish in this tournament would have qualified them for Division Two of the same tournament later in the year.[26] Unfortunately, the United States of America Cricket Association was suspended from the ICC and the team was pulled from this competition.[27] The suspension was due to an internal dispute over a constitution for the USACA. The dispute was resolved in early 2008, and the suspension was lifted on April 1 of that year.

The team's reinstatement permitted them to enter the World Cricket League in Division Five for 2008 in Jersey. The team made it through the Group Stage tied for first in their division with a 4–0–0 record (one match abandoned),[28] but lost both their semi-final match with Jersey and their third-place play-off with Nepal.[29]


USA finished second in the 2010 Division Five after losing the final against Nepal and won promotion to 2010 Division Four. They continued their climb in more emphatic style by finishing first in 2010 Division Four, demolishing Italy in the final. They were promoted to 2011 Division Three where they took last place and were relegated to 2012 Division Four. There they finished in second place, and were promoted back to 2013 Division Three. They remained in Division Three after finishing in third place, but were relegated after finishing fifth in 2014 Division Three. Next up for them will be 2016 Division Four

2015 suspension

On June 26th, 2015, the ICC again suspended USACA, this time because an ICC review "had expressed significant concerns about the governance, finance, reputation and cricketing activities of USACA". This suspension does not impact the National Team playing Matches, but instead cuts off ICC funding and stops USACA from being able to approve any events held in the USA (although the ICC can still approve events held in the United States). This suspension will be upheld until USACA can show the ICC that "conditions relating to governance, finance and its cricket activities" have improved.[1]

Tournament history

ICC Champions Trophy
ICC Intercontinental Cup
World Cricket League

ICC Trophy
ICC Americas Championship

ICC Twenty20 Americas Championship

  • 2010 Division One: Won
  • 2011 Division One: 2nd place
  • 2013 Division One: Won
  • 2015 Division One: 2nd place


The only U.S. cricket stadium to meet international standards is Central Broward Regional Park in Lauderhill, Florida. Another well-established facility that has hosted international cricket is Leo Magnus Cricket Complex in Los Angeles. A facility in Indianapolis called the Indianapolis World Sports Park opened in 2014.

Stadium City Established
Central Broward Regional Park Lauderhill 2008
Indianapolis World Sports Park Indianapolis 2014
The Leo Magnus Cricket Complex Los Angeles 1973

Coaching staff


Seven players have represented the United States as captain. The first captain of the USA was Anil Kashkari in 1979. He captained the team through three matches, two of which the USA won.

Richard Staple is the only USA captain to captain the side in a One day international, which occurred in 2004. The USA lost both matches. Overall with Staple as captain the USA played 16 matches, of which they won four and lost twelve. After Staple retired in 2005 Steve Massiah was given the captaincy. For the 2012 ICC World Twenty20 Qualifier the captaincy was given to Sushil Nadkarni.

In October 2013, Neil McGarrell was named USA's captain in a 15-man squad for the 2013 ICC World Twenty20 Qualifier in the UAE. McGarrell had played four Tests and 17 ODIs for West Indies between 1998 and 2001. He made his debut for USA in 2012 against Canada and takes over from Steve Massiah who had captain for seven years.

Future tournaments

See also


  1. 1 2 http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci-icc/content/story/891589.html
  2. "Smithsonian Institution Magazine: Cricket, Anyone?". Retrieved 2006-12-05.
  3. "The American Revolution Webpage: The Winter At Valley Forge". Retrieved 2006-12-05.
  4. USA cricket history at cricinfo
  5. 1 2 Das, Deb (n.d.). "Cricinfo – Cricket in the USA". Cricinfo. Retrieved 2007-03-09.
  6. "Canada Versus United States of America Cricket 1844 St George Cricket Club Ground, Manhattan, New York". Cricket Club. n.d. Archived from the original on October 6, 2006. Retrieved 2007-03-09.
  7. "Canada Cricket Online". Canada Cricket. n.d. Retrieved 2007-03-09.
  8. Harris, Jon; et alia. (2002). "Some stories, some history, some facts, some observations: Canadian Cricket History". Retrieved 2009-07-23.
  9. Alan Gibson, The Cricket Captains of England, The Pavilion Library, 1989, ISBN 1-85145-390-3, 4–7.
  10. "Early Baseball and Cricket in America". Seattle Cricket Club. n.d. Retrieved 2007-03-09.
  11. Das, Deb (April 7, 2005). "Cricinfo – Pennsylvania's hidden secret". Cricinfo. Retrieved 2007-02-14.
  12. See summary of first-class matches here.
  13. Rolfe, John (1994). Everything You Want to Know About Sports (Sports Illustrated for Kids). New York: Bantam Books for Young Readers. ISBN 0-553-48166-5.
  14. Synge, Allen (2007). "SABR UK Examiner no.10: Baseball and Cricket: Cross-Currents". Society for American Baseball Research (UK Chapter). Retrieved 2007-01-31.
  15. "Wisden – 1966 – Obituaries in 1965". John Wisden & Co. 1966. Retrieved 2007-01-31.
  16. Bradman, Donald (1998). The Art of Cricket. Robson Books.
  17. US cricket pioneer Clifford Severn passes away at 88
  18. "The Organization". United States Cricket Association. Retrieved 2009-07-21.
  19. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 Timeline of USA cricket at CricketEurope
  20. ICC 6 Nations Challenge 2004 Points Table at Cricket Archive
  21. 1 2 3 List of ODIs played by the USA Archived September 29, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.
  22. 1 2 Points Table from the 2004 ICC Champions Trophy at Cricket Archive
  23. 1 2 ICC suspends USA from Intercontinental Cup, Cricinfo
  24. 1 2 Americas Division One at Cricket Archive
  25. Americas Division One points table
  26. 1 2 World Cricket League Structure Archived September 29, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.
  27. 1 2 Cricinfo – ICC suspends USA Cricket Association
  28. Points tables at WCL5 Official site
  29. 1 2 Results at WCL5 Official site
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