Montgomery College of Maryland won the first American College Cricket Championship in Ft. Lauderdale this past weekend.
From The New York Times
As envisioned by Lloyd Jodah and Nino DiLoreto of the American College Cricket, this championship, to be held over spring break, will become the ultimate collegiate championship in USA. They toiled hard to make that a reality during the first year.
Not since 1881 has USA seen a collegiate cricket championship that has had such an impact. In 1881 U Penn, through the efforts of John B Thayer Jr. joined with Harvard, Haverford, Princeton, Trinity College of Hartford and Columbia to form the Intercollegiate Cricket Association. Cornell was admitted some years later. Columbia, Princeton and Trinity dropped out after the first season but the others continued to play well into the 1890s.
Yes, there are other college championships in America - such as the Intercollegiate Cricket League in the NJ/PA/NY area; MichCA IUST championship in Detroit (which was won by Oakland University), and the MidWest Cricket Tournament featuring some 15 university teams from the midwest (which was won by Columbus).
The American College Cricket Championship kicked things up a notch. Firstly, the championship is designed as a pan-USA championship and colleges from Florida to Pennsylvania entered the tournament. Secondly, they secured some top-notch endorsements and some small sponsorships. Shivnarine Chanderpaul gifted a trophy - a rare feat for USA cricket. The prizes were sponsored by Laparkan, DreamCricket's PavilionShop, and Bedessee Sporting Goods. DreamCricket.com provided media coverage. But the coup de grâce was that they got New York Times and International Herald Tribune to cover the final!
This year, five colleges took part in the event, traveling at their own expense. As New York Times noted - the students "packed their sunscreen and headed to Florida" to play cricket! By all accounts, the students enjoyed the tournament. In the words of Kalpesh Patel of University of Miami: "We always had the desire to play, but there was no real framework for us to get involved. "With that kind of a beginning, the organizers have set the stage for a bigger event next year.
This year, Sumantro Das of Boston University said that his team spent something like $400 per participant - a huge cost for a student. "Who else is doing anything for cricket in this country?" he asks. The Boston University Cricket Club received some help from the university. Lloyd Jodah, the tournament's organizer, hoped that the event would attract greater sponsorship support and the participating colleges would get more help from their universities. With luck, the tournament could be held at the 5000 seat Broward County Stadium that has a purpose-built wicket.
Cricket is not one of the eleven sports covered by HurricaneSports.com - University of Miami's athletic site. But when Miami students broke into "Go 'canes" chants, there was little doubt that they were as proud of their cricket as they were about their baseball.
Check out the following link for the article on New York Times article. Here is the link to the IHT article. Of course, here is the link to the DreamCricket.com article.
Montgomery College wins the Chanderpaul trophy