Ontario Cricket Development Organization -- Posted Friday, November 30 2007
The Ontario Cricket Development Organization (OCDO), which was founded to provide cricket programs at the grassroots level, has enjoyed tremendous success in their initiatives over the last two years.
Bolstered by funding from the Ontario Trillium Foundation, the group has successfully held year-round coaching programs for over 300 boys and girls aged 5 to 19. In addition OCDO has visited over 60 schools to date for cricket clinics and demonstrations, and with their recent additional funding have been able to provide starter cricket sets to schools in the Peel Region.
Director Sarabjit Kalsi stated that, "OCDO has been at the forefront of grassroots and schools cricket development in the GTA, particularly in the Peel Region". As well as holding 'Learn to Play' Clinics for elementary and secondary schools, OCDO has educated and certified over 110 teachers and cricket volunteers as "ICC Introduction to Cricket Coaches" since they started two years ago.
OCDO's Head Development Officer, Derek Perera, who is an ICC Certified Coach's Instructor believes that, "through teacher and volunteer education and certification we can help improve the level of cricket in Ontario by introducing new youngsters to the sport".
OCDO has also held very successful cricket events, such as the 'Youth Cricket Festival' in October in conjunction with the Community Environment Alliance. The full day event began with a U-13 and U-19 age group knockout tournament and saw an OCDO Youth Team take on a team of MP's from the Mississauga area. Most recently OCDO held a Winter Indoor Cricket Tournament consisting of over 16 teams, over two weeks. The final was an eagerly contested match between the OCDO Blues playing the North Stars.
OCDO’s U-12 Kiddie Kricket League which was held over the summer, was a great success, growing from 8, eight per side teams to 18 this year. Kalsi believes that this type of league is excellent for the kids, as everyone must participate and be involved because of the smaller team sizes.
Parent volunteer Shawn Paltooram, whose son has been part of OCDO's programs was full of praise for OCDO stating, "this group has given so much to cricket and the kids, it is great to see that they have been recognized and deserve all the support they can get". OCDO's upcoming programs include the expansion of their Schools Program and U-12 Kiddies League, and a U-19 Outdoor Tournament.
A degree in cricket? -- Posted Friday, November 30 2007
Cricket as a university course? Yes, but not in Britain or elsewhere in the Commonwealth. In the United States! To be specific, at California State University, Fresno, where Ivan Rove, Professor of Education, is teaching 'Cricket: its history, skills and social role'.
The Experimental College spring semester bulletin explains to students: 'Cricket is a sport played throughout the world. From Cailfornia in the West to Hong Kong in the East, from Canada in the North to Chile in the South, cricket is international. CSUF has a team which will play in the Southern California League from March to October, 1974. The course is to introduce students to the basic laws and techniques of the game, to bring to their attention the vast amount of literature devoted to the game, its role in the various societies where it is played, and its historical traditions. Students will learn to play the game and will read intensively of the many types of literature about cricket. Films, personal reading, coaching, and playing will be used as instructional techniques in the course."
Article published in The Cricketer, (Spring Annual) April 1974.
Victoria International Six-A-Side cricket Festival -- Posted Thursday, November 29 2007
Victoria, the capital city of British Columbia on Canada's Pacific coast, is situated on the southern tip of Vancouver Island and is proud of its title as the "City of Gardens" and its reputation for amateur sports in Canada.
The Victoria International Six-A-Side Cricket Festival is scheduled for Victoria for August 2008. The festival, known as VISAS, is held every second year and welcomes teams from around the world to compete in a shortened, fast-paced version of cricket. Traditional cricket is played by teams of 11 players and a match can take anywhere from a few hours to five days to complete. Six-a-side cricket is a modified version of the game (similar perhaps to three-on-three basketball of seven-a-side rugby) which uses fewer players, takes less time and produces a lot of spectacular action.
Over the past 20 years VISAS has had the pleasure of hosting a wide variety of teams from around the world. The festival has welcomed teams from Australia, New Zealand, England, Italy, Singapore, Hong Kong, the West Indies, Isle of Man, Bangladesh and the Bahamas. In addition, teams from New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Miami, Houston and Dallas have visited from the USA, while Toronto, Edmonton and Vancouver have come from across Canada.
Last year the VISAS welcomed teams from Australia (Dapto CC), New Zealand, Italy, the USA (Dallas and Los Angeles) and Vancouver.
The Victoria cricket community celebrated the 20th anniversary of VISAS in grand style with fabulous cricket and is now looking forward to another fine exhibition in August, 2008.
Registrations now being taken.
Several changes announced at AGM -- Posted Wednesday, November 28 2007
Canada to host 2012 Under-19 World Cup
November 27, 2007
Canada have accepted the ICC's invitation to host the 2012 Under-19 World Cup. The president Ben Sennik told the AGM on Sunday: "We believe this will be a valuable milestone for Canadian cricket since it means we will be able to welcome representative teams from the full-member ICC countries to Canadian shores."
Sennik also announced plans for turf wickets in Montreal and Vancouver which they aim to finish by 2009. "This will be a major step forward for cricket nationally across Canada."
Mike Kendall and Ravin Moorthy are the new vice-presidents of the Canada Cricket Association, while the CCA has a new look to it as well, as it will be known as Cricket Canada from now on.
A spokesman for Cricket Canada told Cricinfo: "This is designed firstly to bring the title of the organisation (CCA) more up-to-date and in line with many other sports bodies in Canada, notably, Hockey Canada and Ski Canada. It is also totally (and easily) bilingual and therefore in line with Federal Government preferences."
Kendall replaces Howard Petrook who resigned around the time of the new CEO announcement, while Moorthy replaces Ramesh Jagoo. Ben Sennik remains as president. Calvin Clarke remains as general secretary while the new treasurer is Bill Siddiqui, replacing Damien Jaganathan. Claire Abbot retained her post as women's representative.
Prince Edward Island was elected to Cricket Canada membership, making nine provinces in total. Cricket has been played there since the 19th century. The spokesman added: "We are very pleased to add another province - it's just further evidence of the spread of the game, now to Canada's smallest province and the seat of Canadian Confederation - in 1867."
A loss of $CAN 17,000 was reported.
Article sourced from:-
Remarks by President Ben Sennick -- Posted Wednesday, November 28 2007
The article, "Remarks by President, Ben Sennik ...", demonstrates the androcentric nature of the Canadian Cricket Association (sorry 'Cricket Canada'). There is not one word about women in the newly minted "Cricket Canada".
The creation of a new women's team in Toronto (OCL2), and the existing "Wicket Maidens" on the west coast of Canada, are but two examples of women's interest in playing cricket.
The enormous contribution of women at the cricket club level is emblematic. Without the women's support, the male cricketers would be hard pressed to play 'our game'.
A few years ago there was a seminar about developing cricket in Canadian schools. That was something of a 'no brainer', as the schools in the GTA today are in a lock down mode.
The schools within the Toronto school boards do give students access to cricket. If women cricketers are to be developed there is the necessity to develop programmes for girls in schools.
If the "Cricket Canada" entity is to develop cricket in our country it will require the input from cricketers from coast to coast. This cannot be done by eight or ten men sitting around a board room table twice a year. The grass roots will have something to offer, but only is there is access to the table.
Should Canada host the 2012 Under-19 World Cup, the development programme for the 12 to 15 year olds should now be in place in order to have a viable Canadian team. Has "Cricket Canada" a development programme in place? Will there be programmes from coast to coast?
Ben Sennick's 'Remarks' ... can be located at:-
History of the Canadian Cricket Association -- Posted Monday, November 26 2007
Whereas it is known that a body known as the Canadian Cricket Association was, in fact, in existence, during the latter half of the last century, very little is known about the activities and scope of this organization, who its officers may have been or where its headquarters was located. It is known, however, that Canadian Teams were selected to participate in certain tours as witness the visit to England of a Canadian side in 1880: another under the title Gentlemen of Canada, 1887: a third known as The Canadian Zingari in 1910: a fourth sponsored by Norman Seagram of Toronto in 1922, and what amounted to the first really representative Canadain Team, which was taken to England in 1936 by the Honarable R.C. Matthews of Toronto.
By virtue of the fact that Mr. Matthews' team was the first one of its kind to include players from Western Canada it was, altho not in name, certainly a representative side. The success which attended the efforts of this team abroad no doubt contributed in large measure to the declared intent, upon their return, to form a body representative of and entitled to speak for all Canadian cricketers engaged in any international match or tour abroad.
First steps in this direction had been taken, in fact, two years before Mr. Matthews' Team visited England as, in 1934, at a meeting of the Ontario Cricket Association in Toronto, a proposal that a Dominion Body should be created was put to the meeting and was accepted in principle. Later in that year, a body known as the Dominion Cricket Advisory Board, under the Chairmanship of the Hon. R.C. Matthews was set up. Due to the work contributed by members of this Board, who were drawn from Vancouver, Regina, and Montreal, to assist Mr. Matthews, the MCC toured Canada from coast to coast in 1937. It was partly as a result of a series of recommendations made by the members of this MCC side that plans were pushed forward to create a Canadain Cricket Association and to prepare a constitution to which all Canadian cricket organisations would be asked to subscribe.
The original constitution was adopted in 1940 after having been revised and tailored to meet the needs of the situation as it then appeared. Owing to the natural division of Eastern and Western Canada and the considered necessity of having bodies which would be able to deal with matters which were deemed to affect one part of the country but not the other, Regional Boards were set up.
No sooner had the constitution been adopted than cricket matters bogged down owing to the all consuming demands on time and personel dictated by the Second World War. At the close of hostilities steps were taken, as quickly as proved practical, to revive cricket on a nation wide scale and in 1947 the first Inter-Provincial Tournament was held in Toronto. Teams from British Columbia, the Prairie Provinces, Ontario and Quebec participated, and the tournament was considered such an outstading success that plans were made for its continuation. It was as a result of the success of this tournament that certain defects became apparent in the constitution and a series of discussions took place in Toronto in August, 1947, with a view to promoting cricket on a national basis in the future.. It was decided, as an upshot of the discussions held, to dispense with Regional Boards, and to have a representative named by each Cricketing Province to the Board of Control of the Canadian Cricket Association which, itself would have a Chairman, Secretary, and Treasurer. This revised set up was written into the constitution and the Canadian Cricket Association in its present form may be said to date from the adoption of the revised constitution on 29th July, 1949.
Aritcle trancribed by JH from the booklet 'CANADIAN CRICKET ASSOCIATION 1959'.
Quebec cricket -- Posted Sunday, November 25 2007
The history of Quebec cricket stretches back more than 100 years and in that time it has created a host of memories that will live with cricket players and fans for a lifetime.
As I commence my second term as president, (Quebec Cricket Federation Inc.), a position as volotile and fiery as Quebec politics, there seems to prevail a subtle feeling that finally, a calm, harmonious scene has settled on the horizon of Quebec cricket. These amicable feelings could be fostered to grow, only with the willingness of the clubs and individuals, to comply and co-operate with each other. It is a pleasure to see that the Federation is moving forward in the right direction to introduce and implement the following development in the 2007 (2008?) cricket season.
Introducing cricket in schools, in Montreal and other regions, insurance for all members, registration with Minister of Sports Quebec, modified QFC Constitution and By-Laws, increased representative games for seniors and juniors, change format for cup-finals whichg shall be best of three fiftyovers. The Quebec change cup 20/20 format, new cricket balls for all divisions and teams, six-a-side tournament, and finally working together with Montreal Concordia cricket association.
A lot still needs to be done. Just consider the issue of grounds and facilities that is ony now being tackled. But my feeling is that if we continue working with dedication and common sense, the future can hold for our sport tremendous promise. Quebec cricket must be stimulated and encouraged at all levels from elementary schools to our national team that plays around the world. I want to emphasize, once again, the importance of respecting each other both on and off the field. The team captain has an essential role to demonstate in maintaining the strict discipline and ensure that the players comply with the rules and decisions rendered by the umpires on the field of play.
(The) Board of Directors and I want to make it very clear to all members and players the code of conduct will be scrutinized closely and proper action will (be) taken safe guard the integrity of the officials and the game of cricket in general.
Finally, on behalf of all my Board of Dirstors and myself, I would like all of you to have a wonderful cricket season. I would like to thank all (of) our volunteers, (e)specially the publication committee: Jeram, Dalip and Charles,: Navnit for cover design; and sponsors and supporters for helping us to promote the game in Quebec and Canada.
Arvind J. Patel
The above article was transcibed from the "Q.C.F. Annual Cricket Book - 2007 - La Federation Quebecoise du Cricket Inc. The Quebec Cricket Federation Inc."
The book has 144 pages, including 16 pages of advertising, and has pages on all of the 26 cricket clubs in addition to the 32 pages of cricket related photographs.
The QCF Annual Cricket Book of 1995 has 10 pages of advertising in the 126 pages.
There would appear to be an object lesson here for other cricket entities across Canada. (JH)
CCA - Annual General Meeting -- Posted Saturday, November 24 2007
Notice is hereby given that the Annual General Meeting of the Corporation shall be held on Saturday November 24 and Sunday November 25, 2007.
The meeting will be conducted in accordance with the accepted "CORPORATE AGM" procedures.
Meeting of the Board of Directors (Closed) - Saturday, November 24
Meeting of the Provincial Directors (Closed) - Saturday, November 24
Annual General Meeting (Open) - Sunday, November 25.
The Canadian Cricket Association's Annual General Meeting this weekend begins with appropriately closed separate meetings of the Provincial Directors, and the CCA Board today (November 24), followed by an open session including reports from most officers and officials of the CCA.
The CCA website advised of the event but the venue was not publicly revealed, other than as 'Toronto'. The actual meetings are being held at the Fairfield Inn & Suites - Toronto Airport.
Some of the out-of-town delegates arrived at the hotel on Friday. The schedule for the closed sessions today (Saturday) includes:
. review and approval of the audited Financial Statements to Sept 30, 2007;
. confirmation of the resignation of the 1st Vice-President (Mr. Howard Petrook);
. review of a membership application from Prince Edward Island;
. status on the Federal Government Funding Application;
. status on the hosting of the Under-19 Cricket World Cup 2012 in Canada;
. budget report for 2007-2008;
. approval of Selection Criteria;
. review of Draft Constitution; and
. Review/approval of Name Change.
Ten ways a batsman can be out -- Posted Saturday, November 24 2007
There are ten ways a batsman can be out - five are very common and five very rare.
More often than not a batsman will be caught, bowled, given leg before wicket (lbw), run out or stumped.
The five other ways to lose your wicket range from the uncommon to the almost unseen.
The uncommon methods, but not unheard of, are 'hit wicket' - when a batsman removes his or her own bails - and 'handled the ball' - when he handles the ball without permission from the fielding side.
The almost unseen are 'double hit' - deliberately hitting the ball twice, 'obstructing the field' - preventing fielders from executing a run out and 'timed out', which is when a new batsman takes too long to appear on the field.
It's worth knowing however that for the batsman to be given out, the fielding team have to appeal to the umpire by asking "how's that?"
Story from BBC SPORT at:-
A brief history ... -- Posted Friday, November 23 2007
While there are fleeting references to cricket being played in Canada in the 18th century, it only established a more substantial footing in the 1820s with the founding of the Toronto Cricket Club in 1827 by George Barber, a master at Upper Canada College and newspaper publisher. He instigated local matches and in 1844 Canada met USA in what is widely believed to be the oldest international sporting contest in the world. The game, at the St. George's Club in New York, attracted large crowds and reportedly more than $100,000 in bets changed hands.
George Parr of Notts brought the first touring team to Canada from England in 1859, and although the tourists were far too strong for the locals the visit was a great success, becoming the first cricket tour in history. During these years of healthy cricket activity in the east, the game was spreading rapidly in the west.
In 1864 the North West Cricket Club was formed at Winnipeg and in 1876 the famous Victoria Cricket Club was formed on the west coast. Cricket had already been played in both areas prior to the formation of these two clubs, but the game was now beginning to take hold in the west and as a result the sport was played from coast to coast.
By the 1860s the game was booming and when Canada became a nation in 1867 the prime minister declared cricket to be the national sport. In 1872 a third England side, including WG Grace, toured and the Australians visited for the first time six years later.
A weak Canadian side toured England in 1880, then in 1887 the first major tour was undertaken by an all Canadian-born team. The side toured England under the captaincy of Dr ER Ogden and took on several of the counties on level terms. The team far from disgraced itself, recording wins over Ireland, Derbyshire, Warwickshire, and Leicester. In 1905 and 1907 MCC teams made brief tours to the USA and Canada.
The USA v Canada series reached its zenith in the 1890s, at which time the USA were strong enough to tour England themselves. But the growth of baseball and World War One saw cricket decline in popularity both sides of the border.
The series with the USA ceased in 1912 and Canada did not play any overseas opposition until 1932 when Vic Richardson brought a strong Australian side including Don Bradman - he lived up to his reputation by smashing 260 not out against Western Ontario.
Tours took place to and from the country in the 1930s - a public schools representative side was in Canada when war broke out in September 1939.
After the war, touring resumed and a visit from MCC (1951) was followed by Canada touring England in 1954 where they played four first-class matches, including a game against the Pakistanis at Lord's. In 1958 Pakistan played a single match against Canada in Toronto at Varsity Stadium.
In 1963 the series against the USA was resumed at Toronto, while tours continued to arrive and the game was popularised by the increasing numbers of immigrants from the Caribbean and then the subcontinent.
In April 1968 the Canadian Cricket Association was incorporated. Australia played four matches in Canada on their way to the first Prudential World Cup in 1975 and an Eastern Canada side beat Australia by five wickets in Toronto.
Canada entered the inaugural ICC Trophy in 1979 and finished as runners-up to Sri Lanka, a result which earned them a place in the World Cup proper which followed but they were easily beaten by Pakistan, Australia, and England. Throughout the next two decades Canada continued to perform admirably, although never recapturing the success of 1979.
The large expat community led to Canada being identified as a potential venue for matches as the game looked to broaden its horizons. In 1989 a game took place between Rest of the World and West Indies which attracted more than 40,000, and in 1996 the Toronto Club hosted a one-day series featuring India and Pakistan, and this continued for four years.
Official ODIs resumed in 2006 when Canada played their first games, although they had hosted the 2001 ICC Trophy
While Canada has benefited from the ICC's desire to expand the game, it still faces major logistical problems. The season is short, the facilities are almost all shared with other sports and owned by local authorities, and the government, which used to back the sport, no longer does.
Like the USA, the domination by expats, while improving the standard, raises concerns for the future and for the development of home-grown talent.
The John Ross Robertson Trophy
The John Ross Robertson Trophy is presented to the winner of an annual National club competition. The handsome silver trophy was first presented in 1910, after being donated by John Ross Robertson, owner of the Toronto Evening Telegram. Robertson was a well-known public figure and benefactor, and he is better remembered as the founder of the Toronto Hospital for Sick Children.
Rosedale CC won the first Trophy in 1910, but the dominant club for years was Toronto CC, who won it a record 16 times consecutively between 1932 and 1947. In 1982, the Trophy was re-organized to award a western and eastern Trophy, with a championship game arranged when possible.
Canada v USA
The longest international rivalry in cricket, in fact in any sport is that between Canada and the USA, with the first match (won by Canada) played in 1844M. It perhaps reached its high point between 1890 and 1910, when cricket has at the height of its popularity in both countries, and featured such great players as Bart King, undoubtedly the best North American cricketer of all time. The series lapsed somewhat between the wars, but was resurrected as a regular feature in 1963, when the two teams played for the KA Auty trophy for the first time.
It's just not cricket -- Posted Thursday, November 22 2007
The strange and untimely death of Bob Woolmer, head coach of Pakistan's cricket team, just hours after the players suffered an embarrassing World Cup loss to the usually lousy Irish cricketers, has conspiracy theorists roused. He was found in late March nearly naked on the bathroom floor of a Jamaica hotel room amid blood, vomit, diarrhea and a blood-sugar testing machine (he was diabetic) -- with rings around his neck resembling strangulation marks.
Some say he was murdered by a cricket mafia. Or fanatical spectators. Or disappointed insiders. No matter, the 58-year-old Briton's demise is just the latest in a long line of cricket debacles that reveal the seedier side of what's long been considered the most civilized of sports.
"Cricket is often referred to as a gentleman's sport, but in recent years it's lost some of that lustre," says Kevin Boller, a historian and spokesperson for the Canadian Cricket Association. "Years ago there was no such thing as match-fixing and betting, and [there was] very little rioting. But in the last 50 years there's rioting, accusations of ball tampering and bribing." There's also illegal drug use among players and political connections.
Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf heads his country's cricket board, and Zimbabwe's club is reportedly run by affiliates of President Robert Mugabe. Books such as Cricket and National Identity in the Post-Colonial Age and Pride and Passion: An Exhilarating Half Century of Cricket in Pakistan demonstrate how seriously people take the sport. And titles such as Village Idiots? An Affair with English Cricket and Cricket's Hall of Shame suggest an insanity.
Just before the Pakistan-Ireland game that preceded Woolmer's death, India played Bangladesh and lost the match in a similarly humiliating upset. Angry spectators blitzed the home of an Indian player, throwing stones, and tearing down walls and pillars. Effigies of the team's coaches, including tea towels adorned with the image of one of their faces, were burned and shredded. "We should be used to it," said coach Rahul Dravid, whose name the crowd chanted along with "down, down." The World Cup in 1999 and 1996 saw riots. "People have seized upon cricket and it's almost like a second religion," says Boller.
It's also, apparently, good reason to gamble. High-stakes betting -- multi-million-dollar wagers, even -- are not uncommon. Neither are accusations of bribery and match-fixing among bookmakers and players. In 2000, South African cricketer Hansie Cronje confessed to accepting $100,000 from gamblers four years earlier after tipping them off about how games would go. He was banned from the sport for life. Two years later, at age 32, he died in a suspicious plane crash. Since then, the International Cricket Council has assembled an anti-corruption unit to combat match-fixing, and now every country with a significant standing has a former police officer watching out for deal-making at big games.
With so much pressure to perform well, some players are compelled to use illegal drugs. Last October, two Pakistani players were found to have used a banned anabolic steroid, which helps build muscle and decrease fatigue. (They were later exonerated.) "International cricketers can be playing 30, 40 or 50 games a year, flying from time zone to time zone," which can take its toll on teams, says Boller. (Cricket is played in 95 countries. Canada ranks 14th in the world.) Other players have given in to cheating. Recently, Pakistan withdrew from a game with England -- the first forfeiture in the 129-year history of cricket -- when the Pakistani team was accused of scuffing and loosening the stitches on a ball to its advantage.
Boller says that the decline of cricket ethics started once it became a business, rather than a pastime sport. Today, cricketers can pull in more than half a million dollars a year with endorsements. But the heightened competition also makes the game more exciting. "Anything can happen at any moment. The fortunes of a game can change dramatically," says Boller. "A Frenchman described [cricket] as a war between two nations." It might not be such an outlandish characterization.
Article sourced from:-
The oldest international contest of them all -- Posted Wednesday, November 21 2007
It is one of cricket's curiosities that the oldest international rivalry is not, as many assume, England against Australia. That started in 1877, some 33 years after a side representing USA met a team from Canada at Bloomingdale Park in Manhattan. It is believed that it is the world's oldest international sporting rivalry, pre-dating the Americas Cup by seven years.
Full story at:-
A cricketing weekend in Montreal -- Posted Sunday, November 18 2007
September 22 & 23, 2007
I first visited Montreal in 1984 whilst in Canada during a work-related mission. Hockey sur glace (ice hockey) was the reason. Les Canadiens de Montreal contre Les Bruins de Boston. The Montreal Canadians against the Boston Bruins. An Adams Division rivalry that continues despite the demise of the Adams Division.
I went from Toronto using VIA rail. It was in November. It was cold. And I took in a ski show. There was a subway strike so I walked all around. The legendary Guy Lafleur was still buzzing down the wing and the Canadians won. I was also present at the opening ten games of the Toronto Maple Leafs season and managed a trip to Buffalo to see the Sabres.
After moving to Canada in early 1989 I became a regular at Maple Leaf Gardens and at one stage became a season ticket holder. I realized one year that there was a single seat next to a stairway that I had several tickets for from the public sale day. The following season, the seat was mine. Potentially for ever.
Due to hours worked and international travel, I eventually gave up the season ticket. Away from mainstream work, I wrote on minor league hockey (American Hockey League, the now defunct International Hockey League and the Canadian Major Junior Leagues). Cricket came into the sporting mix more tangentially.
My first sighting of a domestic Canadian cricket match came on a Saturday in 1989 after taking a look at the Scarlett Woods Golf Course. I became a regular player for 2 or 3 years at the course. Mostly on Friday nights when there were not many people interested in playing. On really hot, humid nights, which in reality I did not like, it was good for playing as almost nobody would be on the course, so you could play against yourself using two different balls and get round the course in not much more than an hour and a half.
The Saturday visit found too many people at the course, so I took a look around the adjacent playing fields. The golf course is at the south-west corner of Jane St and Eglinton Avenue West. A soccer (football) field is on the south-east corner, there was soccer, rugby and field hockey (to use the North American description for the sport) at the north-west corner and after the scrubland at the north-east corner I found cricket.
Lifecycle loops back to Eglinton Flats and Montreal
Little did I realize that I would one day see international matches at Eglinton Flats - originally during the 2001 ICC Trophy and in 2007 when Powergen, from Trinidad, played there against two Toronto clubs.
Even less likely was the prospect that some 18 years later I would go overnight to Montreal to see a Premier Division cricket championship playoff and not even attempt to get in to see the Canadiens at their new home!
I've previously reported on the Championship Playoff won by Adastrians against an up-and-coming Pak-Can side and also on the earlier Quebec's win over Ontario in this year's Atholstan Cup match at Raymond Park in LaSalle.
Delayed end of season visit.
I had hoped to take in the Quebec Cricket Federation's Knockout cup that operates for the League's three divisions. This has historically been on Labour Day weekend and until 2007 used to be a three day game. The only three day game that I know of in Canada, except for the original 2004 ICC Intercontinental Cup matches. A tournament now with 4-day games.
The Toronto & District Cricket Association staged its Junior Playoffs over the same weekend and eventually I stayed in Toronto, almost doing a one-day trip to Montreal and back for the Sunday.
But this was too much after almost continous cricket since April 2006, and major efforts away from the playing field since starting to write on the Canadian cricket scene in August 2005.
The plot for the weekend
It was a stroke of luck that two sides were joint leaders of the QCF Premier Division. An extra game was arranged and this setup the chance to visit some new grounds to see Senior A and B Division games on the Sunday.
A detailed city map and a plan of the Montreal Metro (subway) were reviewed at the hotel room and a preliminary walk was made to see if a nearby metro stop was ne where one ground was located. It was not, the name was duplicated in another part of the city. But after a quick phone call, I was on the way to Jarry Park, internationally known for tennis, but not, as yet, for cricket.
Jaunting through Jarry Park
I soon arrived at the south end of Jarry Park. I saw the pretty fountain in a lake and the tennis facility. But beyond the lake were some people clad in whites. As I moved around the lake, I spotted to the far north-west an area behind a wire fence with more people in whites. There were supposed to be two matches and I was on the verge of catching a glimpse of both.
A local councillor has a welcome letter in the 2007 edition of QCF handbook. Jarry Park has some potential for a grass wicket and staging representative cricket, based on the first area where I saw play. Just like back home in Essex, temporary fencing and temporary seats could be out in place. Perhaps it might host the next Atholstan Cup, if funds were put in place?
I saw a few overs of Orient CC against Pakistan CC in the Senior A Divion then moved past a couple of boomerang throwers and a roller hockey game to see my first cricket 'cage-match'.
Now I have seen some professional wrestling cage matches or excerpts on TV. I had not seen 'cage-match' cricket before. Let me explain.
This second cricket ground within Jarry Park comprised two adjacent soccer pitches with an artificial cricket pitch in between. The whole area was surrounded by metal fencing. So, effectively the players were caged in!
But this was a match within the spirit of cricket, the 'fighting' was simply the battle for supremancy between bat and ball. Bharat CC was batting against Adastrians Senior A Division team.
I exchanged greetings with both teams, sought advice on the location of the Attwater Reservoir grounds (for a visit later in the day).
After speaking with a couple of the Adastrians players during the drinks break, I saw a few more balls before making moves to leave Jarry Park, passing the skateboarding area, seeking the metro on the trail of Jean-Talon CC versus India CC.
Strolling through Parc Henri
Jean-Talon and India CC were due to be at the cricket ground in Parc Henri Julien. I noted a sign that Jarry Park had wireless networking, which may prove useful on a future trek to Montreal, but the focus was on seeking out more grounds and matches as the QCF Senior A and B Divisions wound to a close for the 2007 season.
Jarry Park is quite big, and so was Parc Henri Julien. Both trips into, for me, the unknown were partly exercises in 'guess the closest Metro' station to the cricket pitch. For Jarry Park I chose well, picking a stop to the south of the park. I tossed a mental coin and I picked the stop to the north of Parc Henri Julien and gained an interesting walk around a housing complex and down through the park. Women's soccer was in progress in one area, but next time I'll know to get off at the stop to the south of the Park.
The cricket pitch was set in the middle of two baseball diamonds. The fencing around home plate proves useful for stopping the cricket ball after it passes the boundary. The cricket outfield is mostly grass but becomes shale at the business end of each baseball diamond.
There are bound to be parks or playing fields in other parts of Canada where a cricket pitch might be added between two baseball diamonds to allow the occasional cricket match, or a regular mix of cricket on a certain day or for a certain number of hours, followed by baseball.
This mixed sport configuration at Parc Henri Julien brings back memories of a 'Sport for All' event at Hyde Park in London (England) many years ago where a massive range of different sports were being demonstrated. Sussex Stoolball lingers in the back of the memory as one of the sports being played. Basically it was a variant of rounders with stools instead of plates as markers for the runners. Some sports historians believe the likes of Sussex Stoolball was a forerunner of cricket.
Play was well under way,as should be expected. One of the Jean Talon CC batsmen was building towards a useful score, but some others came and went quickly. Another trend seen too often in Canadian domestic cricket. Plenty of overs were left. No need to hit the cover off the first or second ball a new batsman faces.
As I moved around toward the scorers, one of the batting side made sure I knew that one shot had gone for a maximum six runs. My cricket tutor was a player with a bit of vision who might be able to attract passing park visitors to take an interest in cricket. The game could do with several more such people to bring in new recruits who worship baseball, hockey or American football.
He might also be able to restore interest in cricket to those with a cricket background who have 'gone astray' to other sporting attractions. Mark my words there are a lot of people out there who are lapsed cricket players. Let's try and get them back in the fold as players, match day officials (umpires or scorers) or as club organizers and helpers. At least get them into the fold as spectators!
Fittingly, there were a couple of youngsters watching with the rest of the Jean Talon batsmen and the scorers. The India CC scorer was also a youngster and there were shades of days long gone as he used a bat on which to rest his scoresheet. There being no table. Deep in the history of cricket's development, scorers marked notches in wood to record runs scored.
I joined in friendly conversation with my new friend. Eventually I disclosed having seen six sixes in an over earlier in the season. The Jean Talon side was predominantly of Caribbean heritage. No prizes for guessing the South Asian heritage nature of the India CC players!
The plundering batsman's drove ainnings came to an end when he tried to belt the cover off of a ball from a young spin bowler. The youngster picked up a couple of other wickets due in part to over ambitious shots by batsmen too eager to put the ball into the far end of the galaxy. It was also due to the bowler sticking to his line and length.
I stayed until the innings ended. Had a chat with some of the India CC players, wished both campts well and set off for the next ground.
Cricket Potential at the University of Montreal
I had heard the previous night that at least one of two matches scheduled for the University of Montreal grounds had been postponed. It turned out that both games were off, but although the gate to the ground was locked, it was far from a wasted trip.
Here was a ground with two presently artificial wickets, two pavillion/changing rooms, spare ground outside the boundarues and a brick fencing. It is potentially better, with the addition of one or more grass squares for pitches, then either my home town grounds of Southchurch Park (Southend-on-Sea, Essex, England) or Chalkwell Park (Westcliff, which is part of the borough of Southend).
It was a cricket oasis just looking for two club grass squares, a 'feature' ODI grass square in the middle of the two club outfields (for representative matches or league finals), some upgrades to the existing two buildings and a mainstream pavillion for showcase matches.
It was closed on the day due to some maintenance activities that seemingly might put it out of commission for a while, but if this site should be retained, cherished and improved, if at all possible, for cricket it could leave the Toronto Cricket, Skating and Curling club grounds in the shadows, or push some of the 'Toronto is the centre of the universe' thinkers to dust off the cobwebs of complacency and superiority!
People who might still think the world is flat. Some still searching for 'the box'; forget the possibility of 'thinking beyond the box.
And the University of Montreal stadium was just across the street. Potential for large size TV screens for the overspill crowds if hosting a midweek ODI cricket match? Possibly that would be asking for too much in the short term.
It was a pity the gates were locked, but the outfield seemed to be well maintained. Another person stopped by looking for cricket. Ah well, a ground for a future trip to Montreal. Off to discover the next venue.
Maple Leafs from Bangladesh
The final venue proved to be a blue area on the city map. But the water at Attwater Reservoir is either hidden or has been replaced by eartth and, presently, rather scrubby grass. But there was tons of space and possibly potential to squeeze in a third ground rather than the existing two. The other potential would be to build an indoor cricket facility that could have decent length run-ups. Perhaps there is enough space for indoor cricket matches on the land beyond the existing boundaries?
The Attwater Reservoir grounds are due to undergo some development; work was already going on to the area north of the existing cricket fields. But potentially a dome, similar to a golf dome, could be put in place for winter practice and indoor cricket. Perhaps the community might consider such a structure for multiple uses: cricket, soccer, American football, etc. and might get a reasonable payback from usage of the facility. At the same time there would be the benefit of new recreational facilities for residents?
It was here that I saw the Maple Leafs CC, as named in the QCF handbook, clinch the Senior B division with a win over Pak-Can. Closer inspection and discussion showed the club was really known as Bangladesh Maple Leafs and had been playing in the league for just two years.
My cricketing day in Montreal concluded by seeing the tight finish on the adjacent pitch. There was tension as a late order pair squeezed out the runs for victory in the match between Friendship and Orient.
This was another typical Canadian cricket match where if the batsmen stay in for enough overs, the winning runs might tick over in wides. A separate piece is long overdue on sticking to the basics of cricket.
No return to Raymond Park today
I did give half a thought to trying to get to Raymond Park, which was not that far from Attwater Reservoir. MCSO and Bengal were scheduled to be playing there. But the clock had been ticking for a long time. I think I had only managed one coffee, possibly a soft drink and a passing sandwich time, and who knows if the other match would still be in progress.
In a way it would have been nice to round off the day's activities at Raymond Park, but I had seen three previous days at that ground. One lower division match I saw in Toronto during the summer ended by something like 2.45pm. Sorry for missing you, Montreal Caribbean Social Club and Bengal United CC of Montreal. But it gives me a reason to return to La Belle Province next season.
Options for Monday
Somewhere between the Sunday night and around 7 am on the Monday morning, I tracked down the locations on a map of the remaining grounds within the QCF that I have not yet visited. I wanted to take a look at them. I also needed to be in Toronto for some important, personal reasons. I also wondered about seeing some other parks in Montreal for 'cricket potential'. My driving philosophy rests on making the pie bigger, not squabbling over how the one cream dollop on top of the pie is distributed. There may be exceptions when I join a battle over the cream dollop, but there are usually very good reasons for doing so.
The “Montreal Gazette” decided my fate while eating breakfast. All it took was one picture in the main news section. Two Sri Lankan cricketers, one aged 19, playing cricket in a park in one of the eastern parts of the city. Players possibly dreaming of finding a league to play in?
Players perhaps hopeful of international honours for one or more countries - don't forget a player may move on from playing for Canada to playing for a birthplace Test Playing nation, like Sri Lanka.
Perhaps some of them know about the La Federation Quebecoise de Cricket/Quebec Cricket Federation (QCF), perhaps they do not. Canadian cricket needs to go out and find these people. Bring the lost sheep into the fold. Why not convert some wolves to being members sheep within the Canadian cricket flock.
Awaiting Scoring Details
As yet, I only have the basic scores with individual highlights for one of the matches I saw on Sunday September 23 and know the result for one other match. The official website has been dormant for a couple of years, soon after switching from one supplier to another is my understanding.
To bring some element of equity to my coverage of the trip around the grounds in Montreal, I've left out individual names and scores. Hopefully, requests for final league standings and confirmation of basic scores will come in soon. I have had some promises. I have made some calls.
When the scoring details come in, I'll do a separate item and see about including some of the playing pictures from the day's delightful journey around the city.
Some Positive Aspects
On the positive side - coaches always look for something positive - it is great that the QCF produces a good “Annual Cricket Book”. It provides the schedule, it notes the grounds and umpire allocations...it even has the phone numbers for almost all the players and even team supporters!
The QCF has custom made scorebooks that produce a duplicate copy of each scoresheets. Another useful idea.
The QCF Annual Cricket Book for 2007 includes a letter of greetings from a City Councillor. One whose borough includes Jarry Park. Someone who might like to receive a copy of the ICC Development Program's “This is Cricket” that provides some basics on the game, and the ICC's “Cricket without Boundaries” leaflet that aims to show the muli-national, multi-ethnic nature of cricket, as per the spirit of the game that is played by men, women and juniors around the world. There have been championships for deaf, blind and disabled people.
“This is Cricket” est disponsible en Francais.
I wonder if any of the CCA President or Vice-Presidents know that? Some seemed unaware that the ICC has some developmental DVDs that can help promote the game during my brief spell with the CCA in 2006.
Other Options and movements
Going to Montreal for the weekend ruled out any chance of venturing west to see whatever finals were on the agenda in Canada's cricket oases. A cricketing friend told me the Ottawa Valley Championship Playoff was on the Sunday. I'd have liked to be there, and a couple of other places as well. I settled for seeing parts of 5 matches, 10 teams and a look at 7 grounds in Montreal in the space of 9 hours.
I later learned Qaiser Ali and Abdul Jabbar had gone off to the Greater Toronto Area to play on the second day of a Canadian squad warm-up game after playing in the QCF Premier Championship match on the Saturday. There is some amazing dedication in Canadian cricket. People who follow a key point made by Richie Richardson in Toronto in April 2006 about 'hard work behind the scenes.' Hard work that few people get to see.
Come to think about it. My cricket weekend had begun with seeing a gallant band of 5 or 6 players in the nets at the Toronto Cricket, Skating and Curling Club. A milk crate served as the wicket at the bowlers' end.
A pity Mark Nicholas and Tony Cozier were not there to see some of the economics and verify some of the logistics surrounding the Canadian national teams' preparations for the African tour.
As for me, I was on the 9.30am coach back to Toronto. It stopped off for a lunch break at Kingston. The local newspaper did not include anything on who won the previous day's Ottawa Valley Cricket Council championships. Kingston has a team in that league. Another city that can be revisited.
A fun weekend. Even attended a party for a while. I doubt the Quebec Provincial or Montreal city tourist authorities have thought of having 'Metro day trips to QCF cricket' as a marketing ploy.
Perhaps I should put in a bid to obtain the global TV production and distribution rights. And produce the weekly glossy magazine to support the matches. After all I did get a couple of invites to play, one invite to sponsor a team and some supporting pictures. A bientot!
ICC must go on funding cricket's expansion -- Posted Sunday, November 18 2007
Full Member countries get more than enough already
Tony Cozier is, rightly, one of the most respected journalists in the game. His work to cover and promote cricket in the Caribbean has been unstinting for almost four decades. And yet even the best writers have off days, and his attack on the way that the ICC funds the Intercontinental Cup, the first-class competition for the Associates, is one of those.
Cozier's outburst in his Caribbean-syndicated column at the weekend in effect concluded that rather than waste money on Associate tournaments it would be better spent on aiding West Indies, a "well-established member with a great tradition presently fallen on hard times".
Cozier attacked the ICC for doling out "heaven knows how much cash every year" to run the Intercontinental Cup. The overall annual cost of the tournament is actually around $400,000 on top of which the participants contribute another $120,000 between them. For that, the leading eight Associate countries get to play in a prestigious (for them) competition, to meet a variety of opponents across the world and to improve.
Yes, it has its faults and there are mismatches, but the same could be said for any competition or series involving the Full Members. When was the last time Bangladesh or Zimbabwe or, dare it be said, West Indies played in a gripping contest as opposed to occasional one-off successes. As seen at the World Cup, the gulf between the have and have-nots on the field may be large but it is nothing like as vast as the chasm between their respective funding.
The leading Associates survive on grants of under half a million dollars a year; some, such as Kenya and Scotland, earn more through winning tournaments such as the World Cricket League which entitles them to ICC World Twenty20 participation money. The Full Members receive twenty times more. Zimbabwe, for example, coined in almost $11 million from the World Cup, and yet they struggle to hold their own with several Associates. What is more, the Full Members almost all have bloated payrolls; the Associates rely almost entirely on goodwill of hard-working administrators who often end up digging deep into their own pockets to keep things ticking over.
What Cozier seems to overlook is that the ICC should not be about looking after the big boys and forget the rest, although as the major boards become more money-obsessed by the month it may go that way. It has a responsibility to nurture and support the game in areas away from the traditional bedrocks. That is done through a myriad
of tournaments, coaching clinics and advice. The total sum spent on Associates is under 25% of the ICC's overall budget. To scrap that would be akin to pulling up the
drawbridge, hoping that the game survives among the existing ten Full Members, and hang the rest. No other sport would consider such a short-sighted policy, and neither should cricket.
Then there is the additional income that Full Members can earn through the very fact they play each other so often. Sponsorship and TV deals bring in tens of millions on top of the ICC funding. Although the WICB has never revealed the value of the original deal with Digicel, it is believed to be worth more than $20 million for five years. The England board's four-year TV deal with BSkyB was worth in excess of $400 million, the Indian board's own deals even more. They should be awash with cash.
Associates cannot attract funding worth even 5% of that as they play precious few big matches, a fact not helped by the continuing reluctance of most Full Members to play them. The big boys prefer to pack their schedules with ever longer one-day series against the same old - more lucrative - opposition. Television and sponsorship deals for Associates, if they ever get them, are for peanuts.
Cozier also argues that the Intercontinental Cup is not worthwhile as sides cannot always field their full sides as players cannot get time off work. It is a problem, and one everyone is aware of. But that ignores the fact that the bulk of players are prepared to make remarkable sacrifices to represent their countries. With more funding, and not with less, those players can be rewarded for their cricket skills and so availability will improve. As an aside, it is worth remembering West Indies couldn't find 15 players to represent their A team in Zimbabwe last July.
To argue that the woes of the West Indies could be cured by diverting cash from Associates to the Caribbean simply doesn't add up. Those who have witnessed the antics of a succession of West Indies boards might counter that to pour money into the region would be akin to chucking it onto a bonfire. In the last decade the WICB has run up debts running into tens of millions of dollars. It has failed to handle sponsors or players remotely adequately and needed the income from a (poorly run) World Cup to bail it out. That the game in the Caribbean is in need of help is beyond question. But it is in even more need of some broad-minded and competent leadership. Julian Hunte, the new WICB chairman, might be such a man but he has a daunting job ahead of him.
This is not a call for more money to be poured into Associate cricket, but there has to be some kind of reality check before those looking to establish and build the game are asked to tighten their belts even more because a Full Member is down to its last few dozen administrators.
November 14, 2007
Martin Williamson is executive editor of Cricinfo
Article sourced from:-
Bylaws of the Canadian Cricket Association -- Posted Saturday, November 17 2007
Some extracts from the "Bylaws of the Canadian Cricket Association"
The Association shall endeavour to foster the growth and development of cricket throughout Canada. It shall provide participants the opportunity to compete at their level of competence.
8. BOARD OF DIRECTORS
The property and business of the Association shall be managed and conducted by:
a) A Council of Provincial Directors comprising one representative* from each General Member.
b) The Executive Council as defined in Clause 13.
c) The Provincial Representatives as referred to in 8(a) above and the members of the Executive Council as described in Clause 13 shall all be deemed Directors and together constitute the Board of Directors of the Association.
The Directors may exercise all such powers of the Association as are not by the Canadian Corporations Act or by these Bylaws required to be exercised by Members at general meetings.
a) Agents and Employees
The Board of Directors may appoint such agents and engage such employees as it shall deem necessary from time to time, and such persons shall have such authority and shall perform such duties as shall be prescribed by the Board at the time of such appointment. The remuneration of such agents and employees shall be fixed by the Board of Directors by resolution.
13. THE EXECUTIVE COUNCIL
The Executive Council of the Association shall comprise the following officers:
1st Vice President
2nd Vice President
3rd Vice President
Anil Lashkari -- Posted Friday, November 16 2007
It is with great sadness that I have to advise the passing of my good friend Anil Lashkari on Nov 1, 2007.
We had three phases to our friendship, which is most unusual in life. The first was when we he came from India and we both played as opponents in our early twenties in the Central Lancashire League in the UK. Anil with Stockport and myself with Oldham, both as opening batsmen.
We lost touch until years later when we again became opponents in the late 1960's in the Canada v. USA International matches when he was living in Los Angeles.
Upon retirement, Anil moved close to the USA/Canada border in Washington State so he could come up to see his Vancouver friends on the weekends and eventually we became opponents for the third time when he played for West Vancouver CC in the BCMCL. Always the gentleman and an elegant batsman of top calibre, he passed away quietly in the presence of his wife Irene and family.
We all shall miss him.
Respectfully, Cliff Cox.
Cozier slams ICC funding -- Posted Thursday, November 15 2007
No ICC venture more illogical than the Intercontinental Cup
Cozier slams ICC funding of Associate tournament
November 13, 2007
Tony Cozier, the veteran Caribbean journalist and broadcaster, has launched a scathing attack on the way the ICC funds global cricket outside the Test-playing countries.
Writing in his column which is syndicated throughout the Caribbean, Cozier was angry at the way that established regions, such as West Indies, were not allocated more money instead of so much being spent by the ICC on Associate competitions.
"Certainly there is no ICC venture more illogical or costly than the one dubbed the Intercontinental Cup," he wrote. "It is an annual tournament, described by the ICC as its 'flagship first-class competition', comprising round-robin, four-day matches between its second tier members, those one below Test status. These are countries where the game has always been based on amateur, weekend, one-day club cricket. They play no four-day domestic matches and almost certainly never will.
"Yet the ICC doles out heaven knows how much cash every year to fly them, and their own entourage of officials, across the world and to house and feed them at venues as scattered as Aberdeen, Dublin, Namibia, Toronto, Sharjah and Windhoek.
"Canada were unable to raise their strongest team for the African tour because many of their best players simply could not get time off from their jobs. The same problem affects others, rendering the tournament even less relevant."
The ICC maintains that the competition enables players from Associate countries to gain more experience in the longer form of the game.
Information sourced from:-
CCA AGM -- Posted Thursday, November 15 2007
canadcricket.com has been advised that the 'Open Meetings of the Canadian Cricket Association annual general meeting are on Nov 24th 11.15am to 5.30pm. and Nov 25th 9.0am to 10.00am at the Fairfield Inn & Suites Marriott, 3299 Caroga Drive, Mississauga'.
Canadian Double Centuries in the 1800s -- Posted Wednesday, November 14 2007
John E. Hall's 'Sixty Years of Canadian Cricket ' which was published in the late 1800's provides the following double-century Canadian landmarks:-
R. Leisk 202 for Hamilton v Montreal in a match played on July 23 & 24, 1877. Leisk opened the batting with A Woolverton (who made 38, the second top score) as Hamilton made 336 all out. Leisk was eventually run out.
Montreal made 108 and 125, losing the match by an innings and 103 runs.
A. Browning scored 204 for Montreal on Canada Day (July 1) in 1880 in a total of 402 all out against Ottawa. And he really did get the runs - all the runs in this match were run! It was also hot with temperatures in the 90's Farenheit (about 32-34C).
WF Torrance took 7 wickets, but bowlers do not seem to count in many of the reports and scorecards from the 1800s.
Ottawa was then bowled out for 130, losing by 272 runs.
George Seymour Lyon scored 238 not out as Rosedale powered to 390 for 8 on August 24, 1894 against Peterborough. Peterborough made 47 with Allison making 35 not out.
Historical notes submitted by Eddie Norfolk
C.C.A. FUNDING AXED BY SPORT CANADA -- Posted Tuesday, November 13 2007
On March 31, (1995), the federal government sharply reduced funding for 22 sports and, unfortunately, cricket wasd one of them. This means that the Canadain Cricket Association suffered a 60% cut in funding this season (1995) and will be ineligible for funding as of 1996/97 season.
In evaluating sports, Sport Canada placed an emphasis of 60% on high performance, 29% on develeopment and 11% on management. Cricket scored 8.9, 9.2 and 7.1 respecvtively, for a total of 25.2 points, 50th out of 54 sports currently funded. Thus, the C.C.A. was cut 60% this season, and had this season to get up to the funding "threshold". To do that, it would hace had to double its points, and with only the Canada/U.S.A. game slated for this season, it is unlikely the improvement needed in high performance occured.
Dr. Geoff Edwards, C.C.A. Vice President, Programming, was stunned by the news. "It's very unfortunate that a sport as rich in tradition and with a great multicultural appeal like cricket would be savaged like this." Obviously, the cuts were a amjor focus of the C.C.A.'s Semi-Annual General Meeting in Toronto, April 29th and 30th, and will be the primary topic at the C.C.A. A.G.M. in January. (1996).
The above report was published in 'The Ontario Cricket Pitch', volume 5 number 1, October 1995.
Plus ca change, plus ca la meme chose
Cricket for Dummies -- Posted Monday, November 12 2007
Watching cricket used to be like a cup of tea in the morning: you knew what you were getting. Of late, it feels like someone threw in a few extra spoons of sugar. When ESPN-Star, a television channel avowedly committed to sports - unlike SETMax, a predominantly movies-and-entertainment channel that occasionally turns to cricket - unleashed a pitch doctor and nurse during the Asia Cup, your heart sank. It confirmed the worst fears: dumbing down of cricket coverage was no longer an isolated phenomenon, it had become a full blown malaise. It was banal, intrusive and downright silly. It gave innovation a bad name.
Innovations are not new to cricket broadcasting. The nineties brought a slew of them: the snickometer, Hawk-Eye, the stump camera, stump-microphones, super slow-mos. All of these took us closer to the game, and enhanced cricket viewing. The super slow-mo camera showed us how Shane Warne did what he did, and how fast bowlers made the ball swing with their wrists. The latest 'innovations' leave you numb.
A year ago, after having spent close to $250 million to obtain the telecast rights for all ICC events till 2007, Sony Entertainment Television broadcast cricket in a manner that was first bemoaned, and then imitated. They roped in Mandira Bedi, an actress, as presenter, presumably to pose all the questions that every housewife ostensibly wanted to ask. It made a star out of her; her designer sarees became a topic of discussion and she even made it to the cover of a national magazine. "Cricket in India is not just a sport," a Sony official said at the time. "It is entertainment."
It's a bewildering statement for serious followers of the game for whom cricket was entertainment enough. But the channel claimed the innovations had resulted in a 200- to 300-per-cent increase in female viewership, and that women made up 46 per cent of their audience for the World Cup. Obviously it translated into a lot of money because a larger female viewership meant a wider advertising base. In time this would ostensibly extend to the tapping of another huge market: the Hindi-speaking audience.
ESPN-Star caught on quickly, and gave Ravi Shastri and Wasim Akram a laddish mid-match show, Shaz and Waz, where the two chatted with women picked by the audience. Shaz and Waz flirted with their guests openly, sometimes even crossing the line of decency. It was alien to conservative cricket coverage, but according to the channel the show got them 40 per cent more viewers during the breaks. Of course, the show was sponsored.
Things went hysterically over the top during the Asia Cup, a tournament viewers will remember as much for the inanties packaged as novelties as the way India choked in the final. In addition to the pitch doctor, Michael Slater, and 'Professor' Dean Jones, viewers were treated to, among other things, Gillette's Push-Clean Facts, Samsung's Match-up Zone, the Pepsi Huddle, and the Chattar-Pattar predictions.
In many ways, cricket is a game designed for commercial exploitation on television. No other game provides a natural break every four minutes that's long enough for a couple of commercials and short enough to prevent the viewer from switching channels. But increasingly, programmers are pushing the edges in their desperation to create more space within the given time. In part, this can be attributed the ballooning costs of telecast rights.
The rights for the Asia Cup, for instance, were handed out a mere three weeks before the tournament, at Rs 16 crore for a 13-game tournament. ESPN-Star needed not only to recover their money but also to use the tournament as an experiment to determine how much they could afford to bid for the rights to cricket played in India, which are currently up for grabs. "The Asia Cup was far over the top," admitted a senior professional at the channel. "We were in a corner, we had a point to prove. It was very important for ESPN-Star to see what numbers they could write on a tournament of that length before they put in a BCCI bid." Jagmohan Dalmiya had gone public with his expectations of how much the four-year-long rights would cost. About four times more than last time, he had said. He was right: Zee TV put up Rs 1200 crore and ESPN-Star Rs 1100 crore.
The BCCI, in turn, guarantees a minimum of 27 days of international cricket every year, which means that to break even the channel must earn about Rs 10 crore per match day.
Is the price too high? Everyone but the BCCI seems to think so. "Rights have reached a stage where they're now bizarre ... bizarre by any standards. The amount of pressure put on our sales team ..." the man at ESPN-Star trails off. He goes on to admit that with rights selling for astronomical amounts, over-commercialisation was inevitable.
He's not alone. Sanjay Manjrekar, who has been associated with three television channels as commentator, is convinced that the price of television rights directly influences the quality of broadcasts. "Every sports channel is desperate to have live cricket and is willing to pay unreasonable amounts of money, even if it doesn't make business sense. They pay that amount in sheer desperation and then there is a clamour to recover the money spent." Unless advertising rates are inflated, or the price of telecast rights decreased, sports channels are going to struggle to recover their money, and the end result will be embarrassing.
It is a choice, says Steve Norris of Ten Sports - a man instrumental in the broadcast of the recent India-Pakistan series - that every channel has: how much do they want to sell out? "Every network draws a line in the sand about how commercial they are going to make a product, and how far they're going to stick to keep the fundamentals of the games intact."
Norris speaks of his time in England, when Sky Sports bought rights to the Premier League and tried to pull in viewers by throwing dancing girls and fireworks into the mix, before admitting failure and returning to the basics. He agrees that Sony and ESPN-Star's frills have been successful, but wonders if it will last.
To its credit Ten Sports, the newest of the sports broadcasters, has stood out for its belief that cricket alone is a good enough commercial proposition. "I think they have a different approach," says Manjrekar, describing Ten Sports' policy. "By remaining a traditional sports channel, they are looking different."
ESPN's tie-up with Star Sports inadvertently changed the dynamics of cricket coverage. Matches can now be broadcast in two languages, with a different set of commentators on each channel, and two vastly different audiences tuning in to the same game. The ESPN-Star source believes that in due time the clowning around will be scaled down on the English broadcast, but will continue on the Hindi one. It's good news for old-school cricket watchers, but only just.
The channels prefer that their innovations are not referred to as 'dumbing down'. They earnestly believe that a large percentage of the viewership knows about fours and sixes, but nothing more. They believe that Shaz, Waz, and Mandira Bedi are the chosen ones - the ones who will take cricket to the people. That people will respond, and that in a few years Hindi viewers will outnumber English speakers by four to one. As an idea, it isn't too shabby. Surrounded by Bollywood, Indians are supposedly more susceptible to the pull of melodrama than to that of seriousness. Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham was a commercial success, Chandni Bar wasn't.
Perhaps this is the new way, but then money's allegiance is to none but itself. India has been cricket's cash cow for a while, and the emergence of strong teams and a renewed rivalry with Pakistan will make for compelling viewing - which naturally means more money. When India and Pakistan met in March this year, Ten Sports charged Rs 300,000 for 10 seconds of advertising time - a gargantuan amount by the standards of Indian television.
But while it is without question that the higher cost of television rights will put greater pressure on television channels to draw more viewers and find new ways to increase revenue, the question that must be asked is if there isn't another way. Channel 4, which broadcasts English cricket, has ways to sell "without hype or trickery", to quote Mark Nicholas, one of its presenters. They carry special features during the lunch break: Shane Warne showing how to bowl legspin, Brian Lara batting, Richie Benaud picking his all-time XI. Their gimmicks, in Nicholas's words, are designed to "enhance the image and words, not to usurp them."
Striking a balance between commercial needs and the integrity of cricket coverage is a delicate art, but is it impossible? "Very few people are able get the right balance, where they can keep the purists happy and get people who are not into cricket to watch the game," says Manjrekar. For sure, it will take imagination and creative thinking. To start with, broadcasters will do well to look within the game than outside it.
Article written by Rahul Bhatia, who is on the staff of Wisden Cricinfo
Article sourced from:-
ICC could aid the Associates -- Posted Sunday, November 11 2007
A modest proposal to aid the minnows
Craig Wright and Trent Johnston, the Scottish and Irish captains during the World Cup in the Caribbean, may have experienced different fortunes at the tournament, but both are unequivocal in the belief that their countries will only progress up the cricketing ladder with hard cash, not soft soap.
Last Friday, Wright declared that his troops may have hit a "glass ceiling" and risked slipping backwards, without "significant financial assistance." Then, within 24 hours, following his team's emphatic defeat by India at Stormont, Johnston issued a resonant cri de coeur. "We have got to put professional contracts in place, so that players can get back to the standard we set in the West Indies, when we had a schedule of 24/7 cricket," he said. "Without that, we are amateurs with jobs and families to worry about and it is always going to be tough."
The issue of how best to develop the emerging nations remains a taxing dilemma for the ICC, which meets this week in London. Yet there is one obvious solution to the present monetary shortfalls faced by the likes of Scotland, Ireland, the Netherlands and Kenya. Namely, that the sport's governing body should kick Zimbabwe out of international cricket, withdraw its annual payment of $10m to the ZCA, and tell Peter Chingoka, the chairman of the latter organisation, that it is grotesque that he should expect to be subsidised indefinitely.
At a stroke, the move would finally demonstrate that the ICC has some connection with the real world and recognises that questions of morality and ethics should not be left solely to the politicians. After all, the reigning global champions, Australia, have already refused to tour Zimbabwe, with the support of their prime minister, John Howard, and it seems probable that the West Indies A squad's imminent visit to the African country will also either be cancelled or feature such a depleted Caribbean party that any subsequent matches staged in Harare or Bulawayo will be rendered meaningless.
In which light, what do Zimbabwe bring to the table to justify their Full Member status? Even in purely cricketing terms, they are a second-rate proposition, without the likes of Henry Olonga, Heath Streak, the Flowers, Andy and Grant, and Sean Ervine. But, in the wider scheme of things, their continued participation in international cricket is abhorrent: a glaring contradiction of all the social, political and multicultural values which are supposed to be enshrined in the ICC's constitution, but which have been left to wither on the vine under the inadequate stewardship of the council's chief executive, Malcolm Speed.
It shouldn't be forgotten that cricket is fairly trivial in the grand picture of discussing Mugabe's myriad crimes. And yet, the ICC is struggling at the moment to properly finance its associate members, a state of affairs which will doubtless be raised at Lord's over the next days, as the panjandrums pick over the bones of the calamitous World Cup, which finished in darkness but not before sufficient light had been shed on the organisers' collective blundering to ensure that the event will be remembered with derision.
From which perspective, if Speed and his colleagues decided to call an abrupt halt to Zimbabwe's presence in the ranks then that $10m could be the catalyst for professionalizing the game in Scotland, Ireland and beyond.
I spoke last week to Roddy Smith, the chief executive of Cricket Scotland, and he estimated that half-a-million pounds a year would guarantee that his organisation could place 12 to 15 players on contracts, as well as pay for any foreign tours which the Scots are keen to pursue. Given that the Irish are in a similar position, we can conclude that a £3 million leap of faith by the ICC would allow both Celtic nations to establish a full-time structure for the next three years, at which stage they would have to demonstrate to the authorities that they have forged commercial and local authority partnerships within their own territory as a means of moving towards self-sufficiency.
Nobody, least of all Smith, is asking for hand-outs, but it should be obvious to even the most blinkered ICC placeman that if cricket is to expand beyond its present pool, it has to invest in missionary work rather than simply be content to throw the minnows a couple of ODIs every summer.
Heaven alone knows, the ICC badly requires an injection of credibility. What better way than by expelling Zimbabwe, whose politicians have sparked anarchy for the sport ever since 2003? And by rewarding those nations with ambitions to transcend the goldfish bowl and advance into the big pond.
Neil Drysdale is a freelance journalist and author
Article sourced from:-
Derek Perera -- Posted Thursday, November 8 2007
Born in Brampton, Canada, Derek Perera has enjoyed an illustrious cricket career, in Canada and abroad. Derek has played both International and First-Class cricket- a feat very few ‘born’ Canadians can lay claim to! Under the guidance of his father, and Brian Hale, at the young age of 13, Derek made his debut in the Toronto & District Premier Division for Toronto Cricket Skating & Curling Club, where he was later awarded a scholarship.
Derek went on to represent Canada at every level, from Under 19 to the Senior Team, all before he was 19 years old. At the age of 18, he made his senior international debut against Bangladesh in Toronto, and was selected to represent the National Senior team against India in the same year. With the various Canadian teams he has toured Denmark, Holland, England and Malaysia.
Derek was also awarded many scholarships, in 1996 by the ICC- where he was selected to undergo coaching and training by the MCC, and represent the ICC U-21 Select Team. Later that year he was awarded a scholarship in conjunction with Queensland Cricket in Australia where he played Grade Cricket and trained under the watchful eye of Bennett King at the Queensland Institute of Sport.
Derek played in the national U-23 competition and first class in Sri Lanka in 1994/95 for Nondescripts Cricket Club. Among his peers were noted players Aravinda DeSilva, Hashan Tillekeratne and Russell Arnold. In addition, he has played in England for 3 seasons as a Professional Player/Coach, gaining invaluable experience. In Devon, England Derek was one of the first players to score 1000 runs in the season- finishing with a top score of 134*.
Currently, Derek has excelled in coaching, utilizing his knowledge gained through his degree at York University in Kinesiology and Health Science (Sport Science) and coaching certifications from the ICC, ECB and WICB. In 2004, he was appointed the Canada U-23 Player/Coach and coached the Ontario 1st XI in the National U-19 Championships. The Canadian Cricket Association nominated Derek for the ICC High Performance Coaching seminar conducted by Bob Woolmer in 2003 and by Richard Done in 2004 and 2005. Derek travelled to Mexico in 2004, appointed by the Canadian Cricket Association and the ICC- to undergo extensive Cricket Coach training.
Since then Derek has coached the Canada U-19 team for the World Cup Qualifying tournament, the America's Cup and the Canada U-15 in the same tournament. In 2005, he travelled with the senior national team to Ireland where he was the Analyst for the team which eventually qualified for the 2007 World Cup. He was the national senior team analyst for the ICC Intercontinental Cup against Kenya and Bermuda, and also the America's Cup in 2006.
Also in 2006, Derek flew to Chennai (Madras) India, where he was trained by the current Team Analyst for the Indian team in the latest Match Analysis software. As well Derek was invited to attend sessions at MRF with the legendary Dennis Lillee, current Australian bowling coach Troy Cooley and former Indian pacers Venkatesh Prasad and Javagal Srinath for the England fast bowlers training camp.
Still playing cricket in Toronto's Premier league, Derek hopes to pass on as much of his knowledge and experience with keen and dedicated cricketers.
Derek Anthony Perera
Born: Brampton, Canada
Canada, Canada U-23, Canada U-19,
Nondescripts CC (Sri Lanka), ICC Associate U-21 (England), Devon League (England), Sandgate-Redcliffe District (Australia)
Canada ICC Trophy 2005 Ireland- Analyst,
Canada U-19 Americas Cup- Head Coach,
Canada U-15 Americas Cup- Head Coach,
Canada U-23 Premier 2004-2005- Head Coach
Favorite Ground: Lords, England
Favorite Cricketers: Aravinda De Silva, Brian Lara, Sachin Tendulkar, Ricky Ponting, Viv Richards, Abdul Qadir, Malcolm Marshall, Waqar Younis, Wasim Akram, Shane Warne
Favorite Food: Curry
Article sourced from:-
Constitution review under the spotlight -- Posted Wednesday, November 7 2007
USACA's legerdemain fails to impress stakeholders
Deb K Das
October 22, 2007
In yet another display of the obduracy that has become endemic to its activities, the USACA Cricket Association (USACA) trotted out a so-called 'final' version of a constitution that ICC had requested over a year ago. In doing so, it managed to ignore one salient fact; a redraft of the old constitution had been prepared and submitted to USACA in December 2006.
The so-called 'new' version which is now being paraded before bemused US cricketers is the same patchwork quilt of contradictions and inconsistencies that USACA's critics have been complaining about for the past three years. Not a word has been changed, no criticisms answered, no fundamental issues addressed. Why this document should ever have been exhumed is beyond comprehension. Is it, as some cynics suggest, the USACA's idea of a joke? If so, no one is laughing.
The beginnings of this latest fiasco can be traced back to mid-2006 when, under the insistence of ICC, a Constitution Review Committee was established by USACA under the chairmanship of John Wainwright. By all accounts, the Constitution Committee was making steady progress in its appointed tasks. But the USACA executive suddenly decided to take matters into its own hands. The committee was sidelined, an ad hoc group took over, and wrote the document that is being presented today.
This constitution had been posted on the USACA website without any fanfare, and was quickly removed in the face of mounting criticism of its inadequacies and shortcomings.
Unfortunately for USACA, copies of the document had already been circulating among US cricket activists. After failing to get a word from USACA on what was going on, volunteer teams of US cricketers worked long hours to produce a complete re-draft of the USACA constitution and a set of formal amendments to take care of inconsistencies and shortcomings. This was completed well within ICC's original deadlines, and the documents were formally submitted to all concerned.
So there are now two constitutions to consider -- the official version put forward by USACA, and an authoritative re-draft which seeks to replace the old.
The question now is who is to decide which version should be placed before ICC?
Under the present scenario, the one to decide (or, at any rate, recommend) the choice to ICC is Chris Dehring, who was specifically assigned the task by ICC. He will undoubtedly be assisted by Sir Julian Hunte, the incoming president of the West Indies Cricket Board, who has lived in New York and has a long history with US cricket. Both of them command a great deal of respect from US cricketers, and there is hope that they will be able to pull together all the US factions to work for the common good.
Yet there are lingering apprehensions that things may not go quite as smoothly. Many of these are voiced by Asians who have rapidly expanded their participation in US cricket; they point out, with some justification, that all members of the USACA executive and a majority of the USACA board are from the Caribbean, and relations between Asian and Caribbean cricketers have recently been under considerable strain.
As long as ICC continues to exercise its control over US cricket policies, they think, there is hope of just representation for Asians. But a concern is that as soon as ICC declares victory, packs its bags and leaves, they feel, the USACA executive Board will again re-assert its control over US cricket, and the Asians will be left out in the cold.
And so it goes, the merry-go-round of US cricket politics which may be on the final spins of its three-year carnival ride. One can hope this will be the case. The alternative would be nothing less than a catastrophe for US cricket.
Deb K Das is Cricinfo's correspondent in the USA
Article sourced from:-
HISTORY OF CRICKET IN NEWFOUNLAND 1847-1900 -- Posted Tuesday, November 6 2007
The first reference to the game of Cricket played lcally appears in the St. John's Times of August 17, 1847. On the day previous a game was played on the Parade ground between the officers of the H.M.S. Vesuvius (a visiting man-o-war).
In 1851 there is a further reference to a cricket match played between 'the Gentlemen of St. John's and the officers of a visiting warship H.M.S. Alarm.
In the St. John's Times of August 30, 1854 there is a reference to a St. John's Cricket Club and a Garrison Cricket Club. There is also mention of the grounds at Government House serving as a playing pitch for those contests between two clubs.
In 1859 the local Cricket club competed against the officers of H.M.S. Jasper and H.M.S. Alarm and H.M.S. Tartar. Seemingly that same year the game had gained in popularity for we find there is mention of two local Cricket clubs, one the St. John's Amateurs, the other calling themselves the Terra Novas.
By 1868 all games of Cricket were being played on the Parade grounds of Fort Townshend (the present site of the Central Fire Station and Police barracks).
In 1875 the newspapers of that day report that Cricket was behing played in other towns in Newfoundland and notably Hr Grace, Carbonear, and Brigus (all these communities are in Conception Bay).
By 1879 the game of Cricket had apparently 'caught on' locally for we find that the St. John's Cricket Association has become into being. The league then consisted of four teams: Amateurs, Shamrocks, Terra Nova, and Metropolitans.
In 1882 it would seem that the league began to expand. The Mechanics Society entered a team. That same year the playing pitch was readied at Pleasantville by the side of Quidi Vidi Lake in St. John's. A hostelry was built there and a cycling oval. The game of Cricket was played withing the area circumscibed by a bicycling racing track.
In 1883 a team from the local legal profession (local) played the local clergy at Pleasantville. In 1883, as well the local societies entered teams in the Cricket league; two such mentioned are the Benevolent Irish Society and the Star of the Sea Association.
In 1884 saw a team named Shamrocks carry off the Cricket championship. That smae year a team representing St. John's journeyed to Conception Bay there to play a series of games with a Harbour Grace eleven.
In 1884 there appears the first reference to Juvenile Cricket clubs being formed. Those clubs were known as the White Rose, the Red Rose and the Black Diamond.
On August 5, 1885 the Terra Nove Cricket club played a match with H.M.S. Tenedos. The file for this year teams with clippings from newspapers as well as notes.
1886 saw game games played in inter-town series with Brigus, Carbonnear, and Harbour Grace. At St. John's a game was played between the Married and Single men.
In 1887 there is the first mention of football (soccer). It would in time challenge Cricket as the most popular pastime.
In 1887 as well there is a record of many games of Cricket being played at the pitch at Pleasantville. A special game was played on May 24 of that year to mark the celebration of the Queen's birthday.
1888 found frequent references to inter-town games involving St. John's and the Conception Bay towns of Brigus, Harbour Grace, and Carbonear.
In 1890 there is reference to a game of cricket played at Heart's Content. Presumably it would be a match between those who were involved with the Atlantic Cable company.
1893 and 1894. It would appear that the three local colleges formed an intercollegiate league in 1893. St. Boanaventure's college as well as the Methodist College and Bishop Felid College would be the participants.
1896 saw Water Street mercantile firms now entering teams in the City Cricket league.
In 1897 there is a record of a game played between the St. John's Tennis Club and H.M.S. Cordelia. Many of those who were associated with thegame of tennis were also cricketers of note.
1899 through to 1907 Cricket was very popular with the students of the three City colleges. Many pictures are on the file showing championship college teams.
In 1900 it wopuld appear that Cricket was at its peak locally. Our files are simply bulging with rosters of cricketers , match scores etc.
In the Evening Herald issue of February 17, 1900 there is an item dealing with the liklihood of a halifax Cricket team Zingarees playing here. That team did subsequently turn up at St. John's. They played and defeated a City team by a score of 48 to 36.
By 1900 Soccer football seems to be trying to crowd Cricket from the picture. However, despite that observation there are many reports on cricket matches played.
Aricle compiled by Frank W. Graham, Curator and Honourary Secretary Newfoundland Sports Hall of Fame and Newfoundland Sports Archives.
Article transcribed from THE CANADIAN CRICKETER Vol 7 No.2 March 1979
DL - this one is for you - JH
Notable batting and bowling feats in Canadian cricket -- Posted Monday, November 5 2007
Notable batting and bowling feats in Canadian cricket
2007 Ifran Rabbani 304 for Apollo C.C. against the United C.C. at Toronto, in the 3rd Division of the Canadian Commonwealth Cricket Association.
1990 Don Maxwell 280 not out for the York University C.C. against the Commonwealth C.C. at Toronto, in the 3rd Division of the Toronto & District Cricket Association.
2007 Qaiser Ali 264 not out for the Adastrians C.C. against the Pakistann C.C. at Montreal. (Quebec Cricket Federation, 1st Division).
1932 Don Bradman (later Sir Donald) 260 for the Australian XI against Western Ontarion XI at Guelph.
1987 S.F.A. (Faoud) Bacchus 251 not out for the Cosmos C.C. against Ajax C.C., in a friendly match at Ajax.
1917 John Leake 10 for O for the Brigade of the Canadian Expeditionary Forces against the Canadian ASC at St. Omer France. (Army match, World War 1).
1940 C.A. Forbes 10 for 4 fro Trinity College against Upper Canada College at Toronto. (Ontario Colleges Competetion)
1959 L.A. (Bert) Rowe 10 for 7 for the Waterloo C.C. against Galt C.C. at Waterloo. (Southern Ontario Cricket Association)
1960 E. (Eric) Wilkins 10 for 7 for the Hamilton C.C. against the Fairfield C.C. (Hamilton & District Cricket League)
1945 A.S. (Bill) Hendy 10 for 12 for the Rowing Club C.C. against the Vancouver C.C. at Vancouver. (British Columbia Mainland Cricket League)
Information collated by Kevin E. Boller.
EASTERN CANADA v AUSTRALIA -- Posted Saturday, November 3 2007
EASTERN CANADA v AUSTRALIA
Played at Armour Heights, Toronto, Ontario
Saturday, May 24 1975
by Ken Bullock
On a hot, sunny day in with the temperature in the 80's (hardly normal for Toronto) an Eastern Canada eleven, containing four players from Quebec, one from Nova Scotia and six from Ontario pulled the biggest upset in Canadian cricket, since B.C. beat Australia in 1932, by beating Australia by 5 wickets.
While there were a lot of expectations and excitement in the air as spectators began arriving at 9.30 a.m., there could have been few that visualized a victory by the home side.
Australia were put in to bat by Garnett Brisbane and the attack was opened by Rick Stevens, the fast left arm bowler from Toronto and Roy Callender fast right arm from Quebec, against McKosker and Laird. McCosker faced Stevens and took a single off the first over and then played the very first ball from Callender right to Marshall DeSouza, who took a good catch in the slips. Turner, the other potential opener for Australia, joined Laird but both were kept quiet with tight bowling. In the ninth Over Stevens has Turner caught by Patel for 2 with the score at 16. At this point Greg Chappell came in to well-merited applause, as one of the top barsmen in the world today. Patel, slow left arm bowler from London Ontario, came on at the sout end in place of Callender, then DeSouza, slow right arm, replaced Stevens at the north end 5 overs later. With 50 on the board the crowed sensed the pick of the run rate, but the bowlers were giving away very little. At 52 Greg Chappell hit a very hard return to Patel who took a splendid catch. As Walters came in the feeling that something had to give soon. Surely these world class bats would break through the Eastern Canada bowling. But at 73 after some crisp batting by Walters, Laird went on a fine slip catch by Brisbane off Patel. Ian Chappell joined Walters and five minutes later disaster really his the Aussies. Firth Walters was out to a smart stumping by Selwyn Griffith, immediately after 3 successive fours off Patel. Off the next over, Ian Chappell took a 2 when flicked at a ball on the ff from Stevens and went to a tremendous catch in the slips by Ray Nasciemento. So lunch arrived, with Australia 95 for 6 and March and Walker at bat. What an incredible two hours of cricket for an excited crowd. What more could happen?
Marsh provided the initial excitement with some fine shots while Max Walker held his own at the other end. England only got Walker out twice in the six tests so much depended on getting these two batsmen. With 50 added in the first 40 minutes after lunch, Callender returned at the north end while Patel continued to bowl his flighty spinners at the other. While Marsh cracked Callender for 5 fours in two overs it was Walker who succumbed to calender at 144. Two overs later, after being hit for yet another four, Callender had March caught by Brisbane on a long high drive. This was the end, as Callender bowled Lillee, and Patel had Hurst caught to end the innings at 159 in 177 minutes. Callender, Stevens and Patel backed by generally good fielding; marred only by 2 dropped catches, bowled extremely well. Containing Australia to 159 was a fine accomplishment.
Greene of Quebec and Brian Hale of Toronto opened for Eastern Canada against Lillee and Hurst. There was no hesitation by Green as he pulled Lillee for a four in the first over and two more fours in the third. At 28 Huurst was replaced by Max Walker who was greeted by Hale with a 4, 2, and 4. Finally, after 40 minutes of excing stroke play, Green was caught by Walter in the slips at 56, a good start that pleased the large crowd. Hale was hitting freely, encouraged by 2 fours over slips heads. Two runs later Lillee got his only wicket of the day when he bowled off a longer run-up. Hale had really set the stage for the Eastern Canada reply by getting runs quickly at the beginning of the innings. Franklin Dennis joined Nasciemento and proceeded to build on the good start by Hale and Green. At 98, after Max Walker had hit 14 in one over, Higgs came on and had Nascimento caught first ball by Hurst. Larimer promply hit his first ball from Higgs for four and continued to bat well before being caught by Walters on a skied ball. Brisbane went 3 runs later, stumped, trying to puncha ball from Higgs out of the ground.
With Stevens joining Dennis at 131 the critical stage of the innings was reached. The very next over Dennis hit Lillee for two beautiful drives for 4 through extra cover.It seemed that this was the real turning point to victory. The run rate picked up and Dennis played even more confidently whil Stevens continued to hold his own. Finally in the 42nd over Dennis hit Higgs for a 2 and 4 to bring vistorory with just five overs to spare.
In making top score of the day with 57 not out Franklin Dennis played an immaculate innings giving no chances. The 161 runs were scored in 165 minutes of 42 overs.
To beat the Australians was doing the impossible. Ian Chappell summed it up that night at a dinner in honour of the visitors when he said, "On the day we were beaten by a better side".
Report transcibed from "Canadian Cricketer', volume 4, number 2, August 1975 (JH)
The Story of 100 Years of Cricket in Manitoba -- Posted Friday, November 2 2007
Cricket, a traditionally English game that is played widely and held in popular esteem in many countries where typically British institutions prevail, is, paradoxically, virtually an unknown sport in Manitoba to-day. Where, at the turn of the century, the game was played in towns and villages all across the province, it is now all but extinct, and survives only in an enclave in Winnipeg, in a cultural environment that, if not actively inimical to the game’s survival, is certainly indifferent to its fate. Were it not, indeed, for the exuberance and enthusiasm of a small group of migrants from the sunny islands of the Caribbean, the game here would, in all probability, be as dead as the dodo.
Yet the game of cricket has a long and honourable history in Manitoba, having been played in these parts continuously for over a hundred years. Assiduous research has failed to reveal precisely when the game was first introduced into this area, but an educated guess would suggest that it arrived with the earliest British military garrisons who manned the out-posts of empire along the Red River. Certainly, a number of photographs of cricket teams, undated but of considerable antiquity, are to be seen in the old log church at St. Andrews on the Red River. The game definitely antedates the incorporation of the City of Winnipeg, for the earliest allusion to the formation of a cricket club is to be found in Joseph James Hargrave’s book, Red River, published in 1871. This was the North-West Cricket Club, founded in 1864, with the Governor of Rupertsland as its first president.
As may be readily imagined, the cricket played in these pioneer days was of a rather haphazard, not to say rudimentary, character. The early accounts of the game emphasize such interesting peculiarities as the players’ predilection for the consumption of copious quantities of alcoholic beverages during the course of the game. On one occasion recounted by Hargrave in his book, retired chief factor Thomas Sinclair of the North-West Fur Trading Company showed his appreciation of the game by giving the teams a gift of “a gallon of sherry, procured and drunk upon the field.” Hargrave goes on to add that, “before he left the field, the old gentleman very nearly had reason to regret his liberality.” It seems that a ball, presumably struck with more vigor than skill by an inebriated cricketer, “passed so swiftly and so close to his spectacles that he did not see it until a taller friend standing close beside him dropped to the ground with horrible groans and discoloured face, consequent on having received the missile in the ribs.”
If the cricket then tended to be of a somewhat rough-and-ready variety, the surprising thing is, not that it was an unsophisticated form of a highly sophisticated game, but that, in the prevailing conditions, it was played at all. To put the matter in perspective, it is only necessary to remember how recently the area had been settled by British immigrants. The inhabited area of the Colony of Assiniboia, as the settlement was then called, stretched from the confluence of the Red and Assiniboine Rivers a distance of some fifty miles west and forty miles north, but at no point extended more than two miles from the riverbanks. The settlement was accessible from the east only by way of the United States and down the Red River from St. Paul. In 1865 a large number of destitute Indians were in an encampment on the outskirts of the town, a source, at once, of acute embarrassment and potential danger to the settlers.
To have found time to play cricket in these conditions was no small achievement, and it says a great deal for the intrepid character of these pioneer settlers that they had no sooner hewn from a hostile wilderness a home and a livelihood than they introduced the traditional game of their homeland into the fabric of their fragile society. As one of the few diversions to relieve the rigors of their spartan existence, the game was evidently welcomed both for the opportunities it afforded for athletic recreation and for its convivial atmosphere of social intercourse.
The first cricket match of which a record is extant was played on July 16, 1870 at Victoria Park in the St. Andrews district of the Settlement, about half way between Winnipeg and Lockport. Three years later the record shows the game also played in Selkirk, and the score book lists teams fielded by the military battalion and the civil service.
From about 1874 on, the game enjoyed widespread popular appeal in Manitoba, and rarely a summer week-end went by without a cricket match to report. The old back numbers of The Winnipeg Free Press, preserved for posterity on microfilm in the newspaper’s archives, contain interesting and colourful accounts of the cricket activity of these years, together with detailed score cards of many of the cricket matches played in that era. Prominent amongst the team members listed are the names of several illustrious personages, like the Hon. A. G. B. Bannatyne and J. H. McTavish, better known for their activities in the arenas of politics and commerce. The names Osier and McGillivray also appear, attesting to the interest shown in cricket by scions of the old pioneer families of Manitoba.
A strictly amateur, or dilettante, attitude to the game is evident in the casual approach to competition. Organization was conspicuously absent, and the customary method of arranging a match was by choosing teams arbitrarily and issuing challenges, a method which bears the stamp of hallowed English tradition. These challenge matches seem most often to have been played on high days and holidays, and a good deal of imagination evidently went into the selection and naming of the teams. The newspaper reports show that teams representing the military garrison were prominent, and most frequently successful, and that matches were played between teams comprising bankers and lawyers, but, in addition, there were games played by teams bearing names like All Corners, and Benedicts, the latter evidently a team of bachelors, and led by a clergyman called Beck.
In 1882 a Winnipeg cricket team went east for the first time to play a series of matches in Ontario and Quebec. The tour lasted from July 19 to August 5 and proved a resounding success for the Winnipeggers. They played against Toronto, London, Port Hope, Ottawa, and Montreal, and beat them all convincingly, the margin of victory being quite wide in all matches. The detailed scores appear in J. E. Hall’s and R. O. McCulloch’s monumental work, Sixty Years of Canadian Cricket, first published in 1894 and, although now long out of print, still available in the Winnipeg Public Library.
By the early years of this century, cricket was played in towns and villages from Emerson to Selkirk, and from Winnipeg to Moosomin and Wawanesa. Weekend horse-and-buggy expeditions between neighbouring towns were a common occurrence as rival cricket teams visited each other’s home grounds. The matches were invariably attended by numerous ladies in their summer finery and, if a military team was playing, the match would be made into a gala occasion by the presence and rousing performance of a military band. Military personnel, indeed, played a leading role in the cricket activities of these times, and military establishments were, of course, well equipped to provide suitable grounds and other facilities for the promotion of the game.
Interestingly, too, the spacious and well tended grounds of the hospitals for the mentally ill at Selkirk and Brandon for many years provided ideal cricket fields in pleasant surroundings. This happy connection between cricketers and the Provincial Mental Hospital authorities has, regrettably, been severed in more recent times, although this essayist well remembers having played in the last cricket match held in the grounds of the Brandon Mental Hospital in 1957.
Early in this century, too, wider cricketing horizons began to open up to Winnipeg cricketers. Inter-provincial and international competition became increasingly common after 1908, when a team of C.P.R. employees exchanged visits with a team in Minneapolis. The following year Saskatchewan sent a team to play in Winnipeg, and in 1912 a team came to the city from as far afield as Philadelphia, which was then amongst the most world renowned cricket playing centres. That same year a Winnipeg team challenged Toronto for possession of the John Ross Robertson trophy, then as now emblematic of the club cricket championship of Canada, and won handsomely in Toronto. The first three decades of the twentieth century were marked, too, by the signal successes of the Western Canadian Inter-provincial cricket series. Competing provincial representative teams from the four western provinces met annually for many years, sometimes at such unlikely venues as Fort Qu’Appelle, Saskatchewan and Moosomin, Manitoba. This burgeoning was to prove, in fact, the pinnacle of cricketing achievement in the west, a great flowering of the game that has never since been equaled.
In the midst of flowering, decay set in. Times were changing dramatically, and old traditions were being eroded by modern influences. The leisured way of life that had been open to certain fortunate classes in late Victorian and in Edwardian times was disappearing, and the few vestiges of the old, privileged style of life that survived the War of 1914-1918 finally vanished in the stock market crash of 1929 and the ensuing economic depression that lasted well into the 1930-1940 decade. The institution of cricket in Manitoba was no exception to the general rule of change in society, and, where the game survived at all, it was irreversibly changed. Pockets of resistance remained, of course, and, in one noteworthy tour de force, Winnipeg cricketers raised enough money even in the depths of the depression in 1932 to bring the world famous Australian team to the city that summer. This Australian team, which played matches against both Manitoba and Canada in Winnipeg, included the young Don (now Sir Donald) Bradman, perhaps the world’s most successful cricket player of that or any other era in the game’s long history. These events were exceptional, however, and the general tenor through the long depression years was apathy. The Second World War which followed decimated the ranks of Winnipeg cricketers, and all but annihilated the game here.
There was, it is true, some sporadic activity during the war. Australian and other Commonwealth aviation cadets took time from their flying training to help keep the summer game alive on the prairies but, when the war ended, only three cricket teams still existed in Winnipeg, and none elsewhere in Manitoba. Post-war immigration from Britain, and the re-opening of the flying training schools during the Korean War brought new cricketers to the area and ensured that the game would not become extinct, but cultural assimilation caused many of the newcomers to abandon cricket in favour of more socially acceptable recreations, like golf. Not until the arrival of a new wave of immigrants, this time from the Caribbean islands, in the 1960s, did the game once again begin to enjoy a resurgence of popularity and to attract considerable numbers of participants and greater public interest.
Even during the long doldrums, of course, the game continued to provide ample attractions for an initiated and devoted minority. The long tradition of cricket as an essential feature of the sports curricula of the big private schools in Ontario and British Columbia—the game was introduced at Upper Canada College, for example, as long ago as 1837—has done much to maintain the game in these provinces and has also provided an impetus for its promotion elsewhere across the country. In the past 25 years the game in Winnipeg has received repeated stimuli from a continuing series of inter-provincial competitions, international matches, and a never-ending stream of visiting teams from abroad.
The modern inter-provincial series started in Toronto in 1947, when the game in Winnipeg was strong enough only to send a corporal’s guard of cricketers to carry the Manitoba colours as a contingent of a combined Prairie Provinces team. The following year at Vancouver, however, and again at Edmonton and Calgary in 1949, Winnipeg cricketers appeared in force, and, by 1950, the year of the last disastrous Red River flood, they were able to stage the week-long series at Assiniboine Park. Manitoba cricket was back on the map. The events of these and other competitions of the 1947-1955 era were recounted in Cricket Our Weakness, published by the Manitoba Cricket Association in 1957.
In 1960, the Manitoba Colts, a team of Winnipeg schoolboys ranging in age from 12 to 18, travelled to Vancouver where, although considered underdogs in the competition, they astonished their opponents and, winning five of their six matches, emerged at the end of the week worthy winners of the Canadian Junior cricket championship.
The following year, 1961, Manitoba’s adult cricketers made a brave attempt, at Calgary, to emulate the achievement of their younger counterparts. Capably led by a New Zealand expatriate, the Manitobans finished worthy runners-up in this series.
Amongst the more frequent visitors from abroad during this period, the most popular are the teams of amateur, sheep-country cricketers from Tamworth, New South Wales, who, travelling under the aegis of the Emu Cricket Club, come to Winnipeg every fourth or fifth year. The Marylebone Cricket Club, domiciled at the famous headquarters of world cricket at Lord’s Ground in the heart of London. the club that started the modern game and that is charged with responsibility for carrying England’s colours and reputation abroad whenever a touring, representative team travels, has also several times played in Winnipeg, the most recent occasion being 1959.
The pinnacle of post-war cricket achievement in Winnipeg was, however, reached in 1970 when, to mark the occasion of the centenary of Manitoba’s entry into Canadian Confederation, Assiniboine Park was selected as the site and venue of the annual match between Canada and the United States. It is not commonly known that cricket is widely played in the United States, nor that the Canada-v-U.S.A. cricket match is historically the oldest international sporting event in the world, having commenced in 1844. The entire series has been recorded by John Marder in his book, The International Series, published in 1968.
In the match played here in 1970 the Canadian team possessed a commanding lead at the close of play on the first day, but were foiled by a torrential downpour which occurred on the second day and prevented the match from being played out to a decision.
Although it would be foolhardy to conclude a capsule history like this with a prediction of the future of the game in Winnipeg, it is probably fair to say that the game will survive. The Manitoba Cricket Association is a prosperous, non-profit corporation, incorporated under the Companies Act of Manitoba, and the game has achieved a modest measure of public recognition and support as well as tolerant and genuine, if polite rather than enthusiastic, responses from press, radio, and television. Winnipeg’s two hundred active cricket players look, with some confidence, to an auspicious beginning to the game’s second hundred years in Manitoba.
Article sourced from:-
A belated report -- Posted Thursday, November 1 2007
ICC Americas Women's Tournament
Canada win first Americas women's tournament
Martin Vieira in Toronto
August 23, 2007
Canada beat Bermuda by five wickets in an enthralling contest to win the first ICC Americas Women's Championship. Bermuda chose to bat and made 169 for 7 in their 40 overs. Canada then marched to an emphatic victory, and the Americas crown, reaching their target with five overs to spare.
Bermuda's only really meaningful contribution came from allrounder Terry-Lynn Paynter, with an outstanding innings of 58 from 61 balls. For Canada, Helene Gaffney produced a great late bowling spell, to end with figures of 3 for 31 in 5 overs.
Canada got off to a nervous start in reply but a 123-run third-wicket partnership between Kim Coulter (37) and Joanna White, who made a brilliant undefeated 50, signed and sealed the outcome.
Although Bermuda did snatch two late wickets, it was too little too late. Paynter was again the pick for Bermuda, with 1 for 17 off 8 overs.
"It was truly a great team effort, and a fantastic achievement to win the game and the Americas Championship," said Ave Mogan, Canada's captain. "The partnership between Kim and Joanna was really important to get us into a winning position, after our bowlers had done an excellent job in restricting them to 169. Everyone is very happy with this victory."
Bermuda have the consolation of the World Cup qualifier in Pakistan later in the year, and will undoubtedly apply all lessons learnt during this competition in order to be at their best at the qualifier.
"We batted well, especially Terry, to give ourselves a chance, but unfortunately our bowling was less effective," said their vice-captain Linda Mienzer. "We waited too late to apply more pressure, but I think we showed a lot of character throughout the game. Congratulations to Canada, and we will return home and continue to work hard towards the tournament in Pakistan."
In the other game, the Trinidad & Tobago U17 team recorded a massive 241-run victory over a gutsy Argentina side. Star of the show, and player of the match, was young Amanda Samaroo, who struck a superb unbeaten 128, off only 125 balls with 14 fours. Although she did offer a couple of chances, her innings was filled with superlative strokeplay and masterful placing and control - truly a name to look out for in the future.
Support came in the form of Whitney Cudjoe, who made a fine 55, off 91 balls with 7 fours. Cudjoe and Samaroo shared in an entertaining second wicket partnership of 122 runs. After the dismissal of Cudjoe, Samaroo teamed up with Melissa Sandy to add another 121 for the third wicket. Sandy made 29 in 64 balls with 2 fours.
The U17s finished on a mammoth 333 for 3, always beyond the reach of Argentina, who settled for trying to see out their 40 overs, which they did. Catalina Greloni made an unbeaten 20 and Marcela Rojas contributed 17 as they crawled to 92 for 4.
Argentina team manager Moira Culley said: "The girls are very happy with what they achieved today, and in the last days, and I'm sure they are going to improve in the future as they play more matches."
Trinidad & Tobago U17 team manager, Brenda Solozano, was also happy with the past three days of competition. "We have aimed to maintain a high level of cricket here, and I think we have done that. All the players in our squad were able to play in the games, thus allowing me to look at them for further development. It was also very pleasing today to see Amanda Samaroo achieve her personal best score."
After a rest day, Friday will be the final day of the event with a match between the Trinidad & Tobago U17 team and an ICC Americas XI, after which an awards ceremony for the week will take place.
ICC Americas XI, from Ave Mogan (capt), Joanna White, Kim Coulter and Maree Wilson, Chevonne Furbert (v-capt), Reuna Richardson, Terry-Lynn Paynter and Wendy Woodley, Veronica Vasquez and Cecilia Birnie, Mawhish Khan and Santhiya Rajaram.
Coach: Ann Browne-John
Report sourced from:-