Sacramento Premier Cricket League Finals
By Ras H. Siddiqui
The sport of cricket has caught on firmly in the Sacramento, California area as a third league of its kind recently held its finals in the City of Rancho Cordova on June 14 th. This local Sacramento Premier League (SPL) has been playing the sport for the last few years now and an annual tournament has been organized by this grouping, hosting different teams reflective of the diversity present in region of California’s Capital City.
This 16-over Finals match was a trip down memory lane. The languages spoken both on and off the field besides English were Bengali, Punjabi and Urdu along with some South-Indian dialects. The weather was great as the match was played early in the day since the summers in our area can on occasion remind us of our countries of origin. And this was the weekend before Ramadan (Ramzan in South Asia) and since the Captain of one team also happens to be the Imam of Folsom Mosque (Imam Aamir Nazir), it was also a relatively “halal” affair. The Folsom team “Jagroto Folsom” faced Ankur Agni in the Finals.
Ankur Agni (AA) won the toss and batted first, scoring 102 runs in the allotted 16 overs. From amongst the bowlers young Arsalan Ahmed took 3 wickets while others (Aamir Hayat, Aamir Nazir and Nirjar) chipped in with good spells too. Jagroto Folsom (JF) chased down the target in 11 overs and lost just 3 wickets. The highest scorer was the man of the match Kashif Mohammed who singlehandedly made 55 runs. . In other areas, the best bowler awards of the league went to Aamir Nazir and Nirjar Shah who had 12 wickets. Russel Biswas from another team in the league, the Rancho Royals got the outstanding all-rounder award with 6 wickets and scoring 104 runs.
The local community and curious visitors to the park were busy watching the Final which was followed by some good food and an enthusiastic awards ceremony.