Cricket team to participate in regional tournament


Captain says he is confident team will bring home win


Members of the Rutgers Cricket Club look forward to starting the season this weekend at the Northeast Regional Cricket Tournament in Brooklyn.

The tournament, which starts Saturday, will host college cricket teams across the Northeast, with the top scoring teams competing in the semi-finals on Oct. 7.

Nisarg Chokshi, captain and president of the team, said his teammates have been working hard over the past month. He is excited to start the season with tomorrow morning’s game.

“Our strategy is simple. Win all the games and put your 100 percent into every game to win the championship,” said Chokshi, a School of Engineering senior. “We are feeling confident about the tournament and shall be going in with positive attitude.”

In past seasons, the University’s team has played against teams from University of South Florida, Texas A&M and Boston University.

The team won its first ever Northeast Regional Cricket Championship game in 2010. The team also placed fifth in the American College Cricket Organization’s national rankings, according to the organization’s website.

“There were two setbacks last year,” Chokshi said. “First, a three-run loss against NYU Polytechnic in the semi-finals of regional championship 2011, and then a five-run loss against Texas A&M in the quarter finals of national championship in Florida in March 2012.”

The team participates in both regional and national tournaments, which are two separate tournaments, he said.  

Mohammad Chaudhry, vice captain of the cricket club team, said he hopes they are successful in winning both the regional and national championship.

“I am confident that we will do well, and hopefully we perform to the best of our potential,” said Chaudhry, an Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy senior.

Jay Patel, the club’s treasurer, said cricket is a game that involves a bat and ball like baseball but has significant differences from the sport.

Patel, an Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy graduate student, said the roots of cricket date back to 16th century England

“Interestingly, the first international cricket match was played between Canada and the United States,” he said. “Unlike baseball, catchers do not have the luxury of wearing mitts with the exception of one catcher on the field, called the wicketkeeper.”

Cricket games consist of two teams of 11 players each and start with a coin toss that allows the winner to choose whether to bat or play on the field. A fielding team member, known as the bowler, pitches the ball to the batter, called a batsman, according to the website.

There are two batsmen, the striker — who is on the opposite side of the field as the pitcher and is the active batter who actually receives the ball from the bowler — and the non-striker, on the bowler’s side of the field, according to the website.

The striker is then supposed to aim for scoring a run by hitting the ball and running to the other side, while the non-striker attempts to run in the opposite side of the field, according to the website.

When six of these runs are completed, that is considered an over. When 20 overs are completed, that is considered an inning, and there are two innings per game, as opposed to baseball which has nine, according to the website.

There are three types of cricket: the five-day test cricket, one-day cricket and 20-20 cricket, Chokshi said.

Chaudhry said he hopes more first-year students and sophomores join the club in the future.

“My personal experience of being a captain tells me that being a captain your first job as a leader should be to make sure that your team gels in well,” Chokshi said.


By Wilson Conde

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