Cricket at the 1998 Commonwealth Games
Cricket was included in the 1998 Commonwealth Games in Malaysia. This was the only time cricket was played at a Commonwealth Games until a women's tournament was included in the 2022 Commonwealth Games. Matches were played over 50 overs, and had List A status rather than full One Day Internationals. As is normal at the multisports events, the Caribbean islands that entered participated as separate nations, not as the combined West Indies team. Indeed, the Games were the first occasion on which an Antigua and Barbuda side competed at a senior level. Northern Ireland also entered, this occurrence being noteworthy because Irish cricket is usually represented by an all-island Irish cricket team.
This article possibly contains original research. (August 2012)
at the 1998 Commonwealth Games
|Dates||9–19 September 1998|
|Competitors||256 (14 per side) from 16 nations|
|Cricket format||List A (50 overs-a-side)|
|Tournament format(s)||Single round-robin & playoffs|
|Champions||South Africa (1st title)|
|Most runs||Avishka Gunawardene (234)|
|Most wickets||Damien Fleming (14)|
Sixteen teams entered the competition, including seven of the nine then Test-playing nations: West Indies did not enter as mentioned above, while England declined to send a team at all, on the grounds that the September date chosen clashed with other fixtures such as the end of the County Championship.
The strength of the teams that were entered varied somewhat. Strong squads including seasoned Test and ODI players were fielded by the three nations that eventually won medals: Bronze medalists New Zealand with Stephen Fleming and Daniel Vettori, silver medalists Australia with Steve and Mark Waugh, Adam Gilchrist, Ricky Ponting, Damien Fleming and Darren Lehmann and gold medalists South Africa with Shaun Pollock, Jacques Kallis, Makhaya Ntini, Mark Boucher, and Herschelle Gibbs. India and Pakistan sent weakened teams as a result of a clash with the 1998 Sahara Cup, although India still named Sachin Tendulkar, Anil Kumble, Harbhajan Singh and VVS Laxman in its Commonwealth team while Pakistan included Shoaib Akhtar. Other notable cricketers who took part in the Commonwealth tournament included Sri Lanka's Mahela Jayawardene, Zimbabwe's Andy Flower and the West Indies' Curtly Ambrose and Richie Richardson, playing for their home country of Antigua and Barbuda under the Commonwealth format.