About Us Contact Us Help




A Think-tank Emerges To Discuss Challenges Facing American Cricket

Rajat Bhatnagar

If you had to guess which country hosted the first-ever international cricket match, the United States of America might not be your first answer. But it is widely recognized to have done just that in September 1844, when teams from the United States and Canada played each other in Manhattan. Canada won the two-day match by 23 runs. The contest is regarded as the first international cricket match and the world’s oldest international sporting contest.

Since the mid-19th century, cricket has slipped from being a mainstream sport in the United States. Baseball overtook cricket as the country’s summer sport of choice, thanks to baseball’s simplicity — cricket requires a specially prepared pitch, among other things — and the fact that America could claim it as its own. It didn’t help that the Imperial Cricket Conference, when it formed in 1909, denied membership to the United States since it was not part of the British Empire.

Today cricket is regaining a U.S. following. Thanks to passionate individuals like Jamie Harrison, founding president of USYCA and former CEO of ACF, has assembled an independent group of cricketing minds to study the problems and propose solutions to address the challenges facing American cricket.  The Center for American Cricket (CAC) initiative comes from a tireless cricket organizer and coincides with the announcement by the ICC of the USA Local Advisory Group.  Notably, there are no overlaps between the two groups.  The stated motive of the CAC is to generate an informed debate and, in turn, create pressure on leaders to act responsibly.

In a separate email addressed to 'USA Cricket Stakeholders,'  Harrison described the new group as an American cricket think-tank and proposed that 'rather than do nothing, waiting for outside actors to direct us, we take the initiative and assume our proper leadership role.'

"There are many challenges that face American cricket," Harrison noted in a media release announcing the CAC.  "In my experience with national cricket governance, these “big picture” problems are typically too overwhelming to be dealt with properly, as resources and energy are devoted to time-sensitive issues such as upcoming tournaments, fundraising, governance issues, etc."

According to the media release, the mission of the Center for American Cricket is:

- to engage in a scholarly, independent study of the challenges facing all aspects of cricket in America
- to put forward multiple solutions to these challenges that include associated benefits and costs
- to engage American cricket stakeholders, relevant governing bodies and organizations in an informed discussion about the challenges and solutions
- to promote research and development activities that will bring the most benefit to American cricket
- to hold decision makers accountable for their administration of cricket in the USA

Harrison hoped in his email that the constituents of the think-tank would come from varying backgrounds and would leave their egos and rivalries behind, focusing instead on finding 'common ground in our shared concern for the game in America.

(Rajat Bhatnagar is an avid cricket supporter, and recognizing that transparent, competent governance is necessary for cricket to thrive in America, is also an avid supporter of the American Cricket Federation and United States Youth Cricket Association (USYCA). )

Bookmark and Share |

You may also access this article through our web-site http://www.lokvani.com/

Home | About Us | Contact Us | Copyrights Help