Town ball is a bat-and-ball sport which had similarities to rounders and was played in North America during 18th and 19th century. The sport was a precursor to the development of modern day baseball. Town Ball was played in many regions and was referred to by other names like "round ball" or "base ball". The rules used for game play varied based on the region but some basic aspects of the game remained the same.
Some of the defining rules were:
- Mostly a square or rectangular shape infield was used. Similar to baseball the field had four bases or pegs.
- Each team usually had more than nine players.
- Unlike baseball, foul territory was not used, and balls struck anywhere in the field was in play.
- Majority of the rules allowed for throwing ball at base runners (called soaking or pluggging) to get them out.
The game play is very similar to that of baseball, where one team pitches and the other team strikes. The batting team players have to strike the ball and cover all the bases before reaching the home base to score a run. If the ball was caught on the full or on the first bounce, the striker was declared out.
Matches were played in an innings format for a pre-agreed number of innings. The team to score the most runs was declared as the winner.
- Knurr and spell - an old English game game from Yorkshire in England, using a stick to hit a ball launched from a trap
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