By Gulshan Singh
Cedar Park was treated to its first annual Cricket Festival on November 7. This festival was part of the ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’ initiative by Government of India to celebrate 75 years of India’s independence across the world and supported by the city administration. Participants and visitors came to celebrate from across Central Texas.
The festival was organized by World Cricket Initiative also known as WCI and was supported by USA Cricket, Consulate General of India in Houston, and Cedar Park City Council.
A similar festival was organized in August in Pearland of the Greater Houston area in Texas.
The City of Cedar Park also issued a Proclamation recognizing the 75th year of India’s independence with a cricket festival. This was a historic and emotional day for the growing Indian American community in Greater Austin.
They cherish a great game of cricket and are excited to see the genuine interest of city administration on expanding the outreach of this sport.
Aseem Mahajan, Consul General of India in Houston, Corbin Van Arsdale, Mayor of Cedar Park City, Heather Jefts, Mayor Pro Tem of Cedar Park City, Kevin Harris, member of Cedar Park City Council and Harish Kotecha, founder and president of EC4A were present at this event to encourage broader communities to play cricket.
The star attraction amongst the cricket enthusiasts was Unmukt Chand. Chand was the captain of World Cup winning India u19 team in 2012.
Young kids and adults alike got an opportunity to play with him and witness some perfect strokes from this prodigy.
In this Cricket Festival about 200 people from different walks of life participated. There were exhibition games for men, women and youth under the flood lights of Brushy Creek Sports Park.
Unmukt Chand wrote in his social media posts: “A historic occasion for the growing cricket community in the US when a city council issues a proclamation to recognize a cricket event!”
Heather Jefts commented in her Facebook post, “We enjoyed a wonderful event last weekend learning about one of the most popular sports in the world, cricket!
It was an honor to meet Unmukt, Aseem Mahajan, and Alok Singh, and watch the next generation of cricket players and fans enjoying the cricket festival.”
WCI (www.wcicricket.com) continues to create more opportunities to play cricket in the USA through the ‘Cricket for All’ initiative.
Its founder Alok Singh expressed his optimism to expand the footprint of cricket across the country with the support of the national governing body USA Cricket.