May 11, 2022
By Nikki Cedrone
The game of cricket can trace its roots back to England in the 1500’s.
Cricket was introduced to countries around the world by the expanding British Empire, including areas like Southeast Asia and the Caribbean. Interestingly, some historians claim the first international match was in 1844, between national teams from Canada and the United States. The match took place in Toronto and the Canada team emerged as the victor.
While the game is similar in nature to American baseball in that a bat, a ball and bases are used to play the game, the similarities essentially end there, with cricket played on a circular field, no gloves, wickets and a completely different set of rules.
Cricket’s popularity is reflected in its influence on other sports, presence in films and cultural impact on sportsmanship and behaviour.
The Brampton Cricket League was founded in 2009 and has been in continuous operation for over 13 years. The league is growing popularity in Brampton due to the large Southeast Asian and Caribbean communities.
I recently had a chance to watch a match with league President, Faraz Saleem, at Teramoto Park in Brampton. Faraz was excited to report that after two difficult years in Covid-19 lockdown, the league is already up and running at full capacity this year.
The league was allowed to operate during the lockdown, however only at a minimal capacity, despite the mental and health benefits it provided to players and spectators alike being played outside in the fresh air.
When the Brampton Cricket League was founded there was only 4 teams registered. Today, the league has expanded to 45 teams with over 3300 players. There are 7 additional teams on a wait list hoping to play next year.
Lack of proper cricket fields has forced a lot of games to adapt to fields designed for other sports such as soccer and baseball, but that doesn’t stop the players and fans from enjoying the game and having fun.
The league is made up of semi-professional players who come from all over the world including England, the Caribbean, India, Pakistan and Australia, and of course, home grown Canadian talent. New Canadian cricket players are typically from homes where the parents who grew up playing and watching cricket and then immigrated to Canada.
To learn more about the Brampton Cricket league visit their website at http://www.bramptoncricketleague.ca/ or go out and enjoy watching and supporting the game.