Cricket explained
The captains toss a coin (note convergent methodology here). One of them wins. That generally settles the outcome of the match, as both have access to sophisticated 5-day weather forcasts and can go 'in' first, or second, to ensure their opponent's turn 'in' is blighted by rain.

There is still some British ritual to go through...

The team who are 'in' first go in (to the pavilion) and then go out, in pairs for what is termed their 'Innings'.

The other team also go out (as a group) and try to get the team that is 'in' out. (there are some 6-7 methods of doing this). As each batsman is 'out' he goes in and another batsman goes out until he is 'out' and comes back in in his turn.

This does not continue as you might expect until *all* are 'out' but just 10 of the 11. The remaining batsman has no partner and has to come in without being 'out'. This means that he is termed 'not out'.

Californians should *not* at this point confuse the term 'out' with 'outed', nor the British public school term 'inning' with 'outing' which over here means 'a trip' (perhaps also over there?)

Then the team that was 'in' goes out to 'field'. The team that was not 'in' goes in (to the pavilion), and in their turn go out to be 'in' in pairs.

Generally it has started to rain by now and the Match is abandoned ...

The rules of a Test Match state clearly that both sides have to be 'in' twice in the five days. As this has not actually happened the result is a 'draw'.

Not to be confused with a 'tie' - which means both sides have been 'in' twice and 'all out' twice, with exactly the same score! This is about as likely as the coin landing on its edge in the first place.

How to score? - well you hit the ball and run between the wickets; Except it is less work to knock it onto the boundary for 'four' at a time.

NB: this has nothing to do with golfing term 'fore' nor with 'scoring'. The latter refers to a studious little man locked in a shed in the corner of the ground, who fills in a complicated form as the match evolves. (No one will ever read it again)

And what has this to do with politics? Well the first things a defeated Prime Minister does here are:

9am Resign as party leader
10am Go and see the Queen (sorry, am I confusing people again?)
11am Go off to watch the Cricket at the Oval

John Major knew what to do. In his speech (9am) he announced his intention to 'get there in time for lunch'. But as any fool (I for one) knows, 'lunch' is when ALL Cricket stops. The team that is 'in' and that which is 'not in' all go into the pavilion again and eat their sandwiches. (there is also 'tea' but that's another story)