Issue #94 T-20 in Japan Comes of Age

Newsletter


March 12, 2009                                                                                              Issue #94

Hello and welcome to this edition of the I.E.C.C. Newsletter.

Index

  • T-20 in Japan Comes of Age
  • The fine print
  • Asia & EAP News –
  • Indian Engineers’ Japan Cricket Rating – New results
  • U.S. T20 Cricket Tournament
  • IECC becomes supporter of Beers for Books
  • IECC Poll results
  • Best of the web
  • Snippet of the Month
  • Trivial facts from our Archives

 

T-20 in Japan Comes of Age

The Kanto Cricket League seems to have found its own Allen Stanford, in terms of sponsorship, that is – let us be clear. In a dramatic announcement, Saqib Khan of Cricket Club of Nagoya proposed to run a Twenty-20 tournament under the auspices of the KCL at the end of the 2009 season that carries a winner-takes-all cash award of JPY 100,000 for the title and various other cash awards for individual performers, all sponsored by C.C of Nagoya. The KCL AGM accepted the proposal unanimously. The tournament is likely to be held at the Shizuoka ground in the months of September and October. The invitation to participate in this unique venture will be limited to the top 8 teams of the KCL tournament.

This is the first time ever in the history of cricket in Japan that a domestic tournament carries a cash prize. It may be recalled that KCL ventured into an unsuccessful T20 competition in 2007 with a grand scheme of making it into an all Japan competition but it fizzled out due to Tokyo based teams’ unwillingness to travel to grounds as far as Shizuoka for a 20 over match. Khan was the main driver behind that tournament and had invested considerable time to draw the plan and schedule. Although a few games were played, KCL eventually abandoned the idea when the reality struck and concentrated on the ODI version in 2008.

Given the unsucssful foray into T20 two years ago, it takes a certain level of chutzpah to organise such an event but Khan was not to give up. He decided to run the tournament on his own, a.k.a Allen Stanford, with the blessings of the KCL to make his pet project a reality and in the course writing an important chapter in Japanese cricket history. Undoubtedly, this is something the Japanese cricket has not seen before. Many  people loathe the concept when money is mentioned in amateur cricket countries. True, money can turn one nasty and ugly but at the same time it is difficult to attract publicity and interest without monetary benefits. We have seen what T20 can do in many countries, especially in India, with its official IPL and its rival ICL, and the now defunct Stanford series between England and the West Indies.

Any tournament that involves cash has high stakes and requires meticulous planning, especially when it comes to umpiring, where professional umpires are scarce and players often have grouses about umpiring decisions. However, Shizuoka being home to two of Japan’s international umpires, this may turn out to be a non-issue. We hope that this is the beginning of a different level of cricket in Japan and evolve into something that attracts the attention of the media, overseas players and teams thus help spread the awareness of the game in Japan.

KCL Adopts a mission statement

The KCL 2009 AGM held on Sunday February 15 adopted a mission statement for KCL for the first time. One of the important points in its stated mission is expansion of cricket in Japan both, in the foreign and local communities.

Mission Statement:
“The Kanto Cricket League (KCL), now in its 15th year and 3rd year in its present format, exists to provide the opportunity for all cricketers in the Kanto and neighbouring areas, regardless of their age, ability or nationality to play competitive cricket. The KCL places great importance on the playing of cricket in the proper spirit and in a friendly manner and with strict adherence to the laws of cricket.
The KCL is also committed to the expansion of cricket in Japan, both in the foreign and local communities, and the sourcing of new cricket grounds and training facilities. The KCL wishes to maintain and improve its relationships with other cricketing organisations inside and outside Japan, and to expand itsactivities accordingly.”

The AGM also decided to divide the KCL Consitution into two parts – Constitution and Match Rules with the Match Rules subject to be changed periodically. The constitution and match rules can be downloaded from http://www.ieccjapan.com/kantocup.htm. The AGM also elected the following people as the new Committee members for 2009:

Bobby Philips
Mumtaz Alam
Tony Fordyce
Robert Gilles-Martineau
T.J Udayaraj
Saqib Khan
Javed Niazi
 

The Fine Print

Arjuna Ranatunga revealed that he never appeared in commercial advertisements because of his mother’s advise not to sell his talent and face for anything.
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Playing at Lord’s is the dream of many, but the privilege of a few. However, a new breakthrough could perhaps help you create the feel of “the home of cricket” in your own backyard. Or even splash it on yourself before your next club match. Perfumers at Procter & Gamble have captured the essence of Lord’s, according to the New Scientist. A technology called headspace analysis was used to take in the odours of freshly cut grass, cricket bats, laundered cricket kit and the players’ changing room (minus the players, thankfully), and these will be used as the starting point for a fragrance. “Perfumers need inspiration, and this can come from people that surround them, places they’ve visited, or things that they love in the world,” said Will Andrews of P&G.
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Veggie lovers voted Indian pace bowler Sreesanth the Sexiest Indian Vegetarian Alive, along with Bollywood actress Kareena Kapoor, in PETA India’s annual online poll. The website describes him thus: “as easy on the eyes as he is hard on his opponents. “A young and exuberant player who has got the moves on the pitch and on the dance floor, it’s no wonder that ‘The Prince of hat-tricks’ has been crowned our king of veggie Valentinos!”.
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Tourism Auckland has invited Mahendra Singh Dhoni to bungee jump off the Harbour Bridge as a way to “see the city in all its glory”. Graeme Osborne, Tourism Auckland’s chief executive, said he wanted the Indian players to “experience the best of what Auckland has to offer” when they tour the city for a one-day game in March. The BCCI has, however, included bungee jumping among the activities that are banned for the players while they tour New Zealand.
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The Indian team that arrived New Zealand last month was furious when they found out that there were no one to carry their luggage.

Comment: Spoiled brats.
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Britain’s schools secretary, Ed Balls, waxed lyrical about the game’s ability to cure many of the nation’s education defects. He said that cricket helps develop skills such as managing statistics and working out sums under pressure, could boost children’s grasp of science, and help their maths skills. It is also an aid to history when studying the Commonwealth. “Cricket is one of the most popular school sports and I’m convinced it can have benefits across the curriculum too. Cricket is often called an art and a science. It’s time for schools to demonstrate that”, he said.
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A former chief operating officer of the Pakistan Cricket Board, Shafqat Naghmi, is sueing PCB chairman Ijaz Butt for damages worth one Pakistan rupee (approximately US$0.012581). Naghmi is taking Butt and other officials to court for levelling charges of financial mismanagement against him. “I will claim a public apology from them and one rupee in damages to show these people what I think they are worth”, Naghmi said.
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A researcher from the Australian National University’s department of English and theatre is to be believed, a poem written in 1553, attributed to John Skelton, refers to Flemish weavers, who settled in southern and eastern England in the 14th century, as “kings of crekettes”, effectively disputing the widely held belief that cricket originated in England.

Comment: England’s claims up in the smoke?
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After watching the Oscar-winning Slumdog Millionaire, Allan Border thinks it’s possible for underprivileged kids to improve their lives through cricket. Coaching children rescued through an anti-child labour campaign in Mumbai, Border said he’d like to see a “Slumdog cricketer” come through the ranks. “When you come as a cricketer you stay in five-star hotels and get looked after incredibly well and play at great stadiums. On those trips you don’t see the real India but through these programmes you get to see the real India or a different side of India. It’s different from where we come from”
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The Hindustan Times reported that a helicopter pilot landed his chopper in the middle of a Ranji Trophy one-day match between Punjab and Services at the Indira Stadium in Una, Himachal Pradesh. The pilot apparently mistook the letter ‘H’ painted in the corner of the ground for landing pad and a fire near the ground for smoke signals. The ‘H’ actually stood for the name of the home team, Himachal Pradesh.

Comment: Will anyone want to fly if they find the same pilot in the cockpit again?
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Source: Various web and print media

Asia & EAP News

Cricket in next year’s South Asian Games

Cricket will be included in next year’s South Asian Games to be staged in Dhaka, a regional Olympic official said. “India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nepal have already agreed to participate in cricket,” Kutubuddin Ahmed, secretary-general of the Bangladesh Olympic Association, told Reuters after a meeting in Kathmandu last month. A Twenty20 competition at under-21 level would feature in the games for the
eight-nation grouping, to be staged from Jan. 29 to Feb.9 next year, he added.

Australia and New Zealand to host 4 EAP women cricketers

Cricket Australia (CA) and New Zealand Cricket (NZC), in conjunction with the International Cricket Council (ICC) East Asia Pacific (EAP) Development Programme, have awarded 4 women cricketers from the EAP region the opportunity to be part of their respective ICC Women’s World Cup 2009 preparations. As part of an initiative to help with the development of the most talented EAP women cricketers, the selected players’ involvement will include attending and participating in training sessions, team meetings, recovery sessions as well as watching the clash between Australia and New Zealand.

New Zealand Cricket will host the two Japanese players selected, Shizuka Kubota and Ema Kuribayashi. Kubota is a right hand number 4 batsman (batswoman?) and first change medium pace bowler. She is the Captain of L-Wyverns Cricket Club and represented Japan at the ICC EAP Women’s Cricket Challenge in 2006 in Papua New Guinea. Kuribayashi is a left handed top order batsman and right arm off-spinner and plays with the L-Wyverns Cricket Club. Ema is currently playing with the East Christchurch Shirley Cricket Club in New Zealand, where her highest score so far is 39 and her best bowling figures are 3 wickets for 28 runs. Ema averaged 50 in the ICC EAP Women’s Cricket Challenge held in Port Moresby, PNG in 2006.

U.S. T20 Cricket Tournament

Announcement from Cricket Council USA:
Cricket Council USA is poised to make Cricket history by staging the largest and richest 20/20 Cricket Tournament in North America. The name of the Tournament is THE US T20 CRICKET TOURNAMENT ’09.

A total of 48 Cricket Clubs will be competing for $100,000.00 in prize money that will be awarded to the winning Club. The Tournament will be played on April 5-12, 2009 in South Florida, USA . Eight Cricket fields will be utilized during the Tournament. The Semi finals and the Final will be played at the first ever Cricket Stadium in North America located in the Central Broward Regional Park in Lauderhill , Florida . The other matches will be played in the cities of Miramar , Cooper City , Lauderhill and Cricket Council USA’s beautiful Cricket Field in Delray Beach.

Cricket Clubs that have already registered for the Tournament are coming from throughout the United States, Canada, Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka, United Arab Emirates (Dubai), US Virgin Islands, West Indies and Sweden.

The US T20 Cricket Tournament ’09 promises to be a wonderful CRICKET FESTIVAL with nearly one thousand Cricketers participating and thousands of Cricket fans cheering their favorite Clubs and Cricket players. You and your Organization are cordially invited to participate in the Tournament. Please refer to our website: www.cricketcouncilusa.com

IECC becomes supporter of Beer for Books

The Indian Engineers cricket club became a sponsor of Beers for Books – not that we are hard drinkers – a novel concept conceived by Gary Bremermann, an active networker and senior recruiter with Robert Leonard Consulting, Tokyo, to support the charity NPO, Room to Read (www.roomtoread.org). The idea behind the concept is a regular social networking event which will be held in a bar/restaurant in a casual setting. For every drink you order, the bar/restaurant will donate 100yen to Room to Read. One beer = 100yen = 1 local language book for a child in a developing country where Room to Read operates (Nepal, India, Cambodia, Sri Lanka, Zambia). So all you have to do is to drink a beer!

We encourage our readers to attend the events to help promote literacy and education in developing coutries. We will be publishing the event details in this Newsletter as well as on our website regularly.

The Room to Read (http://www.roomtoread.org/) was founded in 1998 by John Wood, a former Microsoft executive. It was founded on the belief that “World Change Starts with Educated Children” – and that education is the key to breaking the cycle of poverty. Through their charity organisation, they provide access to education to children in countries with a desperate lack of resources to educate their children such as Cambodia, India, Laos, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, South Africa, and Zambia. A complete history of the NPO’s birth is available at http://www.roomtoread.org/about/history.html. Room to Read is a 4-star rated (the highest) organization according the www.charitynavigator.org.

Event Announcement

The next Beers for Books event will be held at Nirvana New York, Tokyo Midtown, on March 18, 2009 from 7pm to 10pm. Come, enjoy a sumptuous Indian buffet and learn about the just-launched Beers for Books concept in support of Room to Read’s local language program focused on childhood literacy.

Cost is 5000 yen for a full buffet and two drinks included. For every beverage consumed 100yen will be donated to Room to Read, buying one book for children in India.

Indian Engineers’ Japan Cricket Rating – New results

Results as of February 28:

Here is the list of the top 10 teams(last month’s ranking in brackets):

1 Tokyo Giants (1)
2 Nagoya (2)
3 YC&AC (3)
4 Al Karam (4)
4 Wyverns (4)
5 Tokyo Wombats (5)
6 Millennium (6)
7 Adore (7)
8 Kansai Lions (8)
9 Indian Engineers (9)
10 Ichihara Sharks (10)

See the full list here.

We encourage all teams to send us your result statistics regularly so that your team’s rankings remain as accurate as possible. We are in a position to obtain the results of the official tournament matches on our own but we are looking for the results of the friendly matches.

IECC Poll results

Here is the last poll result:

Can Australia reclaim its top spot any time soon?
Yes 67%
No 0%
Yes, but will take time 33%

Take the new poll:

Do you think the new T-20 in Japan that carries JPY100,000 as the prize a good idea?

Visit our home page today to vote!

Readers’ Corner

Editor** We encourage our readers to write back to us with your articles, opinion, feedback and criticism. Feel free to write about anything related to cricket, in Japan or outside.

Best of the Web

A catch that probably won the match for Australia against New Zealand in the recent T-20 match

Aussie Vice Captain Michael Clark’s Sydney residence

Snippets of the Month

Note: Beginning the Issue #39 (May 6, ’04), we bring you some interesting snippets from the cricket world, to celebrate the fourth anniversary this Newsletter and first anniversary of our popular “Trivial Facts” series. The same will be published on the front page of our website too.

“My son is not for sale.” – Arjuna Ranatunga’s mother to a tea company who offered 250,000 rupees for an ad contract with Ranatunga after his debut in Test cricket at the age of 18. Incidentally, his match fees for the Test was 250 rupees.

Trivial facts (from our Archives)

1. Sunil Gavaskar’s only Test wicket was that of Pakista’s Zaheer Abbas when Abbas was dismissed on 96.

2. Four players served as captains of India in the 1958-59 home series against the West Indies.

That’s all in this edition!