5 countries having the most dedicated cricket fans and fan groups

Sudhir Gautam
Sudhir is one of the most popular supporters of the Indian cricket team

The three basic attributes of cricket are batting, bowling and fielding. Apart from those, there is one more character that we must highlight and that is the “fan”. Cricket and fans are like two sides of a coin, they are inseparable. There are only a few countries that play proper cricket across the globe as only 12 countries play ODI matches and 10 countries take part in Test cricket.

Cricket is the most popular game in the subcontinent and is often seen as a religion to many. The sport is popular in a few other countries as well such as England, Australia, South Africa and the West Indies, to name a few.

Millions of people are associated with this beautiful game and they are the true backbone of this sport. Like in football, Cricket also has some spectacular fans and fan groups across the world.

Let’s take a look at the top 5 countries which have most dedicated fans and fan groups

5) Bangladesh

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Shoaib Ali Bukhari:

We can easily recognise him by his eye-catching getup as he comes to the ground every time in the look of a 'Royal Bengal Tiger'. By profession, he is a mechanic but his true identity is that he is a crazy fan of the Bangladesh Cricket team.

Over the years, Bangladesh may have lost its fair share of matches but Bukhari can be seen cheering the side on, irrespective of the performance. He can shout all the day for Team Bangladesh and would never care about from where he would get his next meal or if he will get a proper bed to sleep or not.

Fortunately for Bukhari, Bangladesh have done decently over the past couple of years in ODIs and that surely must give more reasons to smile and celebrate.

4) England

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Barmy Army:

The Barmy Army is a group of England Cricket fans named by the Australian media as they never stopped chanting for England, irrespective of the side’s good or bad performances. It was founded by three men who were friends and had travelled to Australia for the Ashes series of the 1994-95 season to cheer on the English cricketers.

The group is actually very well organised and well known for their social work also. They also have a good reputation among the cricket administrators of the country and according to the Army, they want to make the game popular across the every corner of the World.

Supporters of England cricket can join anytime in the group to cheer their team in a unique style.

3) Sri Lanka

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Percy Abeysekera:

Percy is a legend and almost synonymous to Sri Lankan cricket. He had supported his side even before Sri Lanka got ‘Test’ status but he retired at the age of 77 after Sri Lanka won their first ever Twenty20 World Championship in 2014. Percy, who claims to have watched over a thousand games but his travelling had been reduced since he started looking after his sister.

Gayan Senanayaka:

Gayan Senanayaka is an another spectacular fan of Sri Lankan cricket. His love for the game and fanaticism for the national side grew when he was just 17-years of age and watched the island nation pick up the 1996 World Cup.

He has attended more than 200 matches at home and abroad and is known to be the one who starts egging the team on and gets the crowd going.

Sudesh Piyatissa:

Sudesh has his unique style for supporting his national team. In fact, he is a creative man and came up with an idea of making a video which includes star Cricketers from Sri Lanka like Mahela Jayawardene, Kumar Sangakkara, and many more.

He was seen during 2015 World Cup wearing an eye-catching orange costume. He supplied the costume to hundreds of Lankan fans through his website and donated all the money to a Sri Lankan charity group, supported by Sangakkara and Jayawardene.

2) Pakistan

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Chacha Cricket:

Chaudhary Abdul Jail, popularly known as Chacha Cricket is one of the most dedicated supporters of the Pakistan side. He became popular during the 1980 Sharjah Cup matches and has supported the Pakistan side like no other fans. Later, the PCB hired him and sponsored him to cheer for Pakistan cricket team all over the world.

Chacha T20:

Mohammad Zaman Khan, famously known as Chacha T20, resigned from his job in 2011 to cheer for Pakistan in the Asia Cup as his leave application was not approved. He has been watching cricket matches of Pakistan in the ground alongside the famous Chacha Cricket. Pakistan in the last six years have played a lot of games in the UAE due to security issues in Pakistan and Chacha T20 has been there to cheer them on.

Fan groups:

Stani Army: It is a group of Pakistan supporter in the United Kingdom. This group is very similar to England’s Barmy Army. They have a website named staniarmy.com, where fans of the Pakistan team can join in, interact and discuss with other supporters of the Asian nation.

1) India

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Sudhir Kumar Gautam:

Sudhir Chaudhary, popularly known as Sudhir Kumar Gautam is one of the most dedicated fans of the Indian Cricket team. He has become popular for attending every home match of the Indian Cricket team had played since 2003.

Sudhir is usually seen with his body painted with national Tricolour of India.He shaved his head with an Indian map carved on his scalp with hair and a painted name of the master blaster, Sachin Tendulkar on his body. Even after the retirement of Sachin Tendulkar, Sudhir continues his travels with the Indian team to support them.

Ram Babu

Ram is a crazy fan of MS Dhoni and Team India. and is another person who colours himself similar to the Indian flag and cheers the team on. Sachin has Sudhir and Dhoni has Ram, it seems. The Dhoni fan also seems to be very close to the Indian wicket-keeper.

Babu once told the Times of India, “Dhoni bhai is always concerned about me as I have three mouths to feed in my family—wife and two kids. I do odd jobs like standing as guard at warehouses or part-time jobs during the off-season,"

Dhoni had even offered him a job, so as to help the supporter’s financial condition but Ram swiftly replied, “Watching and cheering India is a full-time job, isn't it,"

Fan Groups:

Swami Army

The Swami army is the largest fan group in India. It was formed during India’s tour of Australia in the Season 2003/04 by a group of 10 passionate Indian cricket supporters. The tour was important as it was former Australian skipper Steve Waugh’s final Test series, but also represented the start of India’s climb to the top of the Test rankings.

The group that started with 10 main members now has over 5000 members and is growing.

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Edited by Staff Editor
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