History of Cricket in Canada


Cricket is the oldest sport in the world, with evidence of it being played dating back to the 16th century. However, as with many other sports, its popularity and presence diminished over time. The game was almost forgotten until it found a resurgence in England in the 19th century as an alternative summer activity for cricket clubs that were unable to play their usual games during the winter months.

Cricket has been played in Canada for over 200 years, with the first game believed to have taken place on October 30, 1838, in Quebec City — although some historians date the first match even earlier to 1835. However, it wasn’t until 1967 that Canada began playing international test matches again; since then they have become known as one of the leading associate members of Cricket amongst nations such as Hong Kong, Namibia, and Kenya.

The Origins of Cricket in Canada

The earliest documented history of cricket in Canada dates back to 1838 in Quebec City, where a match between two teams was played on the Plains of Abraham, with each side containing 22 players. The game was also played in Halifax and Montreal around this time, with matches between different clubs becoming a weekly event in the warmer months. However, the first game was believed to have occurred in Toronto several years earlier, on October 30, 1831 when St. George’s Cricket Club played against members of the Toronto Cricket Club on an open field near the city. Unfortunately, there is very little evidence that remains of this match, suggesting that cricket was played primarily by wealthy gentlemen in these early days.

Early Days and Beginnings


St. George’s Cricket Club was the first club to form in Canada, being founded in Nova Scotia in 1827. The Toronto Cricket Club, formed in 1827 and the first North American cricket club, is still playing to this day and is the oldest sports club in Canada. There were many cricket clubs in Canada around this time, with societies in St. John’s, Newfoundland; Windsor, Nova Scotia; Halifax, Nova Scotia and Quebec City all enjoying the game. As well as clubs in Montreal and Toronto, there were also a number of cricket clubs in New Brunswick, the capital of which was Fredericton. Although the game was growing in popularity and was played in many regions, it was still predominantly an upper-class activity. It was rarely played by the lower classes, who would instead focus on sports such as baseball and lacrosse.

Progression into the 20th Century

Although cricket was played and enjoyed in Canada during the 19th century as depicted in this link

The game suffered a lull and was almost forgotten during the first half of the 20th century. This lack of attention for the sport may be attributed to the First and Second World Wars, in which many of the players were killed and others were called back to fight on the front lines.

The first-ever international cricket match was played between Canada and the United States in 1844, and the Canadians played their first home international against the same opposition in 1866 at the Banook Grounds in Halifax, Nova Scotia. The first-ever international match to be played in Toronto was at the Maple Leaf Cricket Club Ground in 1877, with the Canadians hoping to display the growing popularity of the game in the country. However, it wasn’t until the 1960s that cricket began its revival in the country, with many prominent members of the English cricket community encouraging their fellow countrymen to spread their love of cricket to the rest of the world.

Cricket’s Drought and Revival


In 1900, a group of people formed a committee to promote and develop the game in Canada. This committee, led by G. W. Beers was responsible for the formation of the Dominion of Canada Cricket Association (DCIA), the governing body of cricket in Canada. At a time when there was a significant drought for the sport in the country, the DCIA started to grow the popularity and presence of cricket in Canada once again. They began by forming a national team that competed at the 1901 Cricket World Cup in England, where they were defeated by Australia in their first match and then went on to lose to South Africa in their second before being defeated by England in their third and final match. This was a significant event for the sport in Canada, as it showed that the country was ready and willing to compete against the best in the world and could be taken seriously as a cricketing nation.

Current State of Cricket in Canada

Today, Canada Cricket is a growing sport that is played in many regions across the country. It is most popular in the Maritime provinces of New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador, where it is the most attended and played sport. The sport is played in all provinces and territories, although it is not nearly as popular in the Western parts of the country as it is in the Eastern regions. There are many Canadian cricketers who have competed at the international level, although they are notably behind many of the other major cricketing nations such as Australia, England and India. Canada Cricket currently holds Associate Membership in the International Cricket Council and has held this position since 1967.



Cricket is the oldest sport in the world, with evidence of it being played dating back to the 16th century. However, as with many other sports, its popularity and presence diminished over time.

Written by Kan Dail