Cricket pitched

Students aim for new intramural league

Cricketers have recently made their presence known on campus.

Last Sunday afternoon, an important step was taken toward forming the first recreational cricket club at Queen’s.

Undergraduate students Sudman Khan and Nadif Ahmed, in conjunction with Duane Parliament, coordinator of intramurals and summer recreation leagues at Queen’s, organized an afternoon of cricket matches at the PEC to gauge student interest.

Khan said the turnout was beyond what he expected.

“Without [Parliament] there would be like 20 people maximum, but when he helped us form the registration page, we got a response of around 110 people,” Khan said. “Queen’s has been really responsive and helpful, and I would really like to thank Duane for helping us get this together — without their help, gathering so many people wouldn’t be possible.”

Khan and Ahmed said they hope to see an intramural league start this fall, which would require about 50 players, with as few as seven or eight cricketers per team.

Using the intramural league to scout for talented players, a club team of around 11 players could be formed. McGill, Carleton, Waterloo and Toronto have clubs that compete in both indoor and outdoor matches.

Normally played outside, cricket can easily be adapted to be played in a gym. To keep it safe on Sunday, the games were played with a taped up tennis ball.

“The actual ball is a wood and leather ball — harder than a baseball,” Khan said. “The [gym] floor couldn’t handle it, and you have to wear pads and stuff to protect yourself, so tape-tennis was the best way to go.”

Khan and Ahmed were among some of the more experienced players at the PEC on Sunday, but there were varying levels of talent present, including first-timers.

Ahmed said playing the sport requires quite a bit of practice, and the better players come from a real cricket background.

“[A lot of us] have been in both Canada and our respective countries — like India, Pakistan, Bangladesh ... [countries] very much into cricket,” Ahmed said. “If you’re living in one of those countries, it’s going to get to you, just like hockey in Canada.”

Although hockey may be more popular in Canada, cricket has a long history in North America. The first ever international cricket match was played between Canada and the US in New York in 1844 — Canada won.

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