In Brief

Google Doodle cricket game celebrates Champions Trophy

Search giant creates smallest interactive game as tournament gets underway at The Oval

Google has marked the start of the Champions Trophy with a cricket-themed Doodle on its homepage.

It features an animated cricket game contested, bizarrely, between a team of crickets and snails.

The game appears on the Google homepage of competing nations, including England, India, Australia and South Africa.

"The internet giant kept it simple: all you have to do is tap or click to swing the bat and watch as you either smack the ball around the field or see the bails knocked off," reports the Daily Telegraph.

"The batsman is a cricket and the fielders are snails – a reference to Google's promise that the game will work on even the slowest of networks."

Indeed, Google says the game is its "smallest interactive Doodle ever" and designed to make sure it "works for everyone, including those on slower mobile networks".

In addition to bigger nations, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka are taking part in the tournament. The Doodle is also appearing on Google homepages in many Caribbean countries, even though the West Indies did not qualify for the tournament.

The Champions Trophy runs from 1 to 18 June in England. The final will be held at The Oval.

Hosts England, who take on minnows Bangladesh in the opening match of the tournament, are in the unusual position of being favourites.

Even more unusual is the fact that match highlights will be screened on the BBC.

"Agreeing a deal to show highlights of the Champions Trophy in England is in attempt by the BBC to prove their commitment to showing cricket again as they look to become the ECB's home for free-to-view coverage from 2020," reports the Telegraph.

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