As the IPL and County Championship loom into view, which fantasy cricket game is best?

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If there’s one thing we like about fantasy cricket leagues, it’s eking out our few remaining fantasy points/doubloons over half a dozen all-but-unknown cricketers to complete our XI after going a bit overboard with our first two selections and an unsuccessful attempt to rein things in a bit with the next three.

If there’s one thing we don’t like about fantasy cricket leagues, it’s paying close attention to how our team is getting on as the season progresses. We don’t want to feel any sort of obligation to do ‘transfers’ to maximise our point-scoring. We just want to pick a team and then passively monitor them, checking in on them about once a fortnight and perhaps bemoaning the fact that our entire bowling attack is either injured or performing so poorly that they are no longer playing first team cricket. This to us is the whole point – the helplessness and underperformance.

That’s what we’ve been on the lookout for today: a kind of hands-off fantasy game that will if not exactly reward inactivity, then at least not punish it. They don’t really do this. They seem to want to you to repeatedly log in and do stuff. It’s almost as if that is the very thing they’re striving for with these games.

So, in summary, the best fantasy cricket game is all of them, right up until the point you submit your side. Our tactical withdrawal game-playing strategy also brings with it the benefit that you don’t have to pay anyone any money or give them your email address or owt.


Mike Gatting wasn't receiving the King Cricket email when he dropped that ludicrously easy chance against India in 1993.


Why risk it when it's so easy to sign up?


  1. Is it too late to launch a KC fantasy cricket competition, where no-one is allowed to make transfers and the scores get updated only whenever there is a County Championship Update post (ie not very often and seemingly at random)?

    If we could agree on a scoring system, that is. And then someone would need to have a spreadsheet or something, and actually keep track of all the games.

    Seems like a lot of work, come to think of it.

    1. Or maybe we could pick a team, here, in the comments, and enter it (agreeing not to make any changes) using a 10 minute e-mail address, so that no-one gets any spam and definitely won’t be contacted in the event that a prize is won.

      Also, why have you picked Jimmy Anderson? He won’t play many County matches, he’ll be knackered or with England. Keaton Jennings is liable to play for England a fair bit as well.

      1. AJ Hose is either a wicketkeeper or opening batsman, and I think his first name might be Adam. I thought he played for Somerset, but it looks like he plays for the same team as Steven Davies, so maybe Surrey? Although I think GHS Garton plays for Surrey, and he looks to be on a different team. So maybe Davies plays for Somerset now. But maybe I’m wrong and Garton plays for Sussex or someone else.

        One thing I know for sure is I’m not going to look any of this up. And I have no idea who KS Velani is.

  2. Ok how about this. Everyone puts in a team. 10 points for a century. Five points for a 50. 10 points for five wickets or more. Five points for three wickets. Only four day games count. No other rules. Teams must be submitted on this thread by 23.59 on Thursday April 6.

    I am NOT volunteering to keep score. We could all keep our own scores.

    1. I’ve realised we would need to assign value to the players, and set a spending limit, which just makes the whole thing too difficult.

      I’ll get my coat.

      1. Why bother? Pick whoever you like. If everyone ends up with the same team, well, then everyone’s a winner, or loser, depending on what said team does…

    2. I think the simplest we could make it would be – everyone picks one bowler and one batsman (yes, you can pick Tim Bresnan, Gary Ballance, or whoever for both).

      At the end of the season your score is:

      Your batsman’s (County Championship) batting average
      Minus your bowler’s (County Championship) bowling average
      Plus 5 (?) points for each (County Championship) match that your bowler or batsman played

      We could all keep score collectively and/or individually. Averages could be copied and paste from Cricinfo. We could all argue about the order of operations. Ged could do a venn diagram.

      We really have left this far too late, though, haven’t we?

      1. I’ve just realised 4 things

        1) My html code for bullet points didn’t work
        2) My order of operations comment was based on a version of the scoring system that involved multiplication, and doesn’t really work in the contect of the one I actually suggested
        3) 5 points for playing a game is too many
        4) I’m in danger of leaving far too many comments on this post

  3. We (me and Jez Horne) used to run one of these things on MTWD. just the way you like it, KC; no transfers, just periodic reports.

    Totes agreeballs.

  4. The best fantasy cricket game is the one in which the winners of said game are in receipt of the prizes purportedly due to them.

    Or the one where the players use broadswords and chainmail rather than boxes and bats.

    Game of Wickets: All Men Must Bowl

  5. The Telegraph version has Private Leagues. Costs £8 though, or 3 for £15, etc, to play. Entries before 11am this Friday – anyone interested?

    1. We did have a look at that but then concluded that no-one wanted to pay £8.

      We could be wrong.

      1. I fell for the ‘good value’ marketing spiel and went for 3 for £15. Only now is it sinking in what I have let myself in for.

        I’ve already made three changes as realised that, as this is opening week, only 12 out of 18 teams are playing (why, why, why?).

        Can-be-arsedness is already waning and the season’s yet to begin. Should’ve heeded your sage advice!

    2. If there’s sufficient weight of public opinion within the realm, we could be persuaded.

      1. Think we’re up to four players now.

        Again, we really should post these things in an article rather than relying on people communicating with us via the comments and Twitter.

      2. I’m happy to hold everybody’s entry fee for the duration of the competition. Just send it to me. Cash, please, no cheques. Cushty.

      3. Behold, I have created the King Cricket CBA Cup. Feel free to join or not. I won’t be overly hurt; almost-but-no-quite-spraining-an-ankle-on-an-uneven-pavement rather than taking-a-cricket-ball-in-the-nadgers levels of hurtedness.

        PIN is 8124380

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