VERY COMMON BRITISH IDIOMS that all originally come from Cricket !


hi everybody and welcome back to love
English I’m Sabrah and I’m a British University English teacher so it is of
course cricket season and this year the World Cup is in England I’m sure lots of
you are watching as I know we’ve got lots of followers from India, Pakistan so
I’m sure lots of you out there are watching now you probably know that
cricket actually originated in the UK we started playing cricket in the UK in
about the 18th century so we invented it and it has in fact influenced a lot of
our vocabulary there are many idiomatic expressions that come from cricket so
today we’re going to look at ten of these idioms that all originally come
from cricket and these idioms are really common in everyday British
conversation in fact before I became a cricket fan I used to say these idioms
without knowing what they actually meant in cricket so they’re super common so
even if you’re not a cricket fan these are going to be so useful as we use them
all the time in everyday British conversation let’s go everybody 10
idioms that all originated from the wonderful British game of cricket if you
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so be sure to catch us on Instagram as well okay so idiom number one is to have
a good innings if you know cricket then you will know that your innings is the
time that you play for so your 50 overs but when we use this idiom in daily
conversation we mean that somebody has had a good life a full life we might
often say it when somebody has actually passed away or an animal has passed away
if they’ve lived a long life and they’ve had a full life we might say it’s very
sad but they had a good innings meaning they had a good time they enjoyed their
time just like we would in cricket say if somebody has played well that they
had a good innings so an example sentence would be I was really sad when
my grandfather passed away but he was 95 so he’d had a very good
innings number two is the phrase be cricket which means to be fair and just
about something now cricket is a very civilized game
it’s always being considered a gentleman’s game as it did originate
amongst the upper classes therefore when we say something is cricket we will say
it is fair we often use this in the negative so if we say well that’s not
cricket this means that something isn’t fair
something about that situation is not fair an example sentence would be it was
really not cricket how she got fired at the last minute like that I can’t
believe management would behave like that number three is to hit or to knock
someone for six this is certainly a phrase that I use very often so to hit
or to knock someone for six you cricket fans out there will know that six is the
highest score and so the opposing team are going to be very shocked if the
batsman hits a six so this is literally what it means the idiom means to be very
shocked by something to be overwhelmed by it, if we say that really knocked me for
six it’s something really surprising really shocking it’s more used in a
negative way so when we receive negative information or something negative
happens to us that we find very shocking we might say oh it really knocked me for
six now an example sentence would be when Leila told me she was leaving love
English it knocked me for six don’t worry guys Leila is not leaving just an
example before you guys start to have a heart attack about that she’s not
leaving but of course if she did say that it would really knock me for six so
great example there number four is to be bowled over of course in cricket this
means that the bowler has bowled the batsman something that he can’t get so
he’s bowled over perhaps even fallen over or lost his footing so how we use
this in everyday conversation it’s again it’s something that has really shocked
us this can also be a positive thing it can be positive or negative we can say I
was bowled over by my pay rise I really didn’t expect it you know I was so
surprised by that so again it’s something that is surprising or shocking
but it’s probably used a little bit more in the positive actually than to knock
someone for six number five is to be on a sticky wicket on a sticky wicket of
course a wicket is when you are knocked out of the game so many ways you can be
knocked out but basically the batsman is out that’s what a wicket is in cricket
so if we say we are on a sticky wicket it means we’re in an uncertain awkward
or dangerous situation the perfect word would probably be to say you’re in a
precarious situation a situation that involves risk so if you’re in a
situation where potentially you could lose your job you don’t have a proper
contract and you’re feeling very insecure you could say I’m on a sticky
wicket here you know I don’t feel like I’m in a safe situation I’ve certainly
used this phrase many many times it sounds very quintessentially English so
it’s a great one to use to be on a sticky wicket to be in an awkward or
insecure situation the next one is to be stumped to be stumped which in cricket
is one of the ways which you are caught out so one of the ways that a batsman is
out now to be stumped really means to be surprised to have no idea how to solve
the problem if we say I’m stumped on that one we mean I’ve got no idea how to
fix this or I’m confused about how to go forward I’m stumped so if you find
yourself in a situation where you feel confused and you don’t know what to do
you can say I’m really stumped on this one or just hmm
you’ve got me stumped an example sentence would be many students feel
quite stumped when it comes to the third conditional number seven is to do
something off your own bat to do something off your own bat meaning to do
something that you want to do nobody is pushing you to do this you do it out of
your own desire so to do it off your own bat nobody has pushed you into this you
do it because you want to so an example sentence would be Leila went to the gym
off her own bat for once her boyfriend didn’t have to push her into going eight
is to catch someone out of course this is one of the
ways that a batsman is out that you can get a wicket so if you catch someone
out the idiom actually means that you find them out on something so it’s
really when you find that someone has done something wrong or made a mistake
so for example if a girl thinks her boyfriend is cheating on her but he says
no I’m not not cheating or it could be vice versa but a guy thinks a girl is
cheating but then actually a friend sees him or her with another girl or boy
kissing them and takes a photo so there you would be able to say you’ve been
caught out you said you weren’t cheating but look at this photo so there that would
be to catch someone out so to find that they’re doing something wrong or they’ve
made a mistake number nine is to throw someone a googly the equivalent in
American sports and in American English would be to throw a curveball now in
cricket this means when a bowler throws a ball which spins in the opposite
direction to what the batsman expects so he is surprised so when we say to throw
someone a googly we present someone with information or a situation which is
surprising for them they are taken aback by this or even discombobulated and you
would know the meaning of that guys if you’ve watched my 12 beautiful English
words which is up there so basically you present them with information that is
surprising or confusing so an example sentence would be Dave really threw Jane
a googly when he said that he wanted to go on a date with her Dave really threw
Jane and googly when he said that he wanted to go on a date with her so
number 10 the last one is to be on the backfoot
now to be on the backfoot means to be in a weaker position or to start off in a
weaker position or somehow you’re pushed into a weaker position for example in
cricket if a batsman steps forward to hit the ball usually he’s in a stronger
position he’s on his front foot but if he has to step backward onto his back
foot it’s harder for him to hit the ball well so he’s on his back foot meaning in
a weaker position so if we say oh he’s on the back foot in that one it means
he’s in a weaker position or he’s got off to a
bad start perhaps so a good example sentence and
we’ll use this to talk about another sport could be Liverpool’s early goal put
Manchester on the back foot and if we looked at it in the context of cricket
we might say England’s high run rate put Australia on the back foot so there we
go guys ten fantastic common everyday British idioms that we use that all come
from a cricket if your country is in the World Cup then I really hope that you do
well best of luck to you of course I’m supporting England enjoy cricket
season everybody and if you’d like to try and use any of these idioms in a
sentence below I’ve also provided a link to test your cricket vocabulary
knowledge which is on the English club website and it’s a quiz so you can try
that out guys and please leave me your score in the comments below
enjoy everybody and we’ll see you soon on love English bye-bye

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