History of Cricket in Colorado
Contrary to common belief, cricket has a long history in the Rocky mountain area. There are accounts of cricket being played since 1869.
Colorado School of mines, Golden Colorado, formed their Cricket Team in 1873.
The English immigrants of Denver, had formed two cricket clubs; St. George’s Association and the Albion Club. By 1880 these clubs were organizing regular cricket matches in Denver.
About 75 miles south of Denver the town of "Little London" (modern day Colorado Springs) formed a cricket team and had organized a game with a team from Denver. The event was very well advertised and is the first cricket match in the recorded history of Colorado.
Here is what on 24th August 1888 The weekly Gazette of Colorado Springs reported in its sports section:
"The long expected and much advertised and talked, game of cricket has at last been played and lost by Colorado Springs.
The reporter noted that the day "was a perfect cricket day and the players were further encouraged by an extremely liberal and gratefully appreciative attendance," and the team "stopped some hot balls in good style and had them in to the wicket keeper in lightning order," but the Denver team, "composed of gentlemen and good cricket players," beat the home team by 36 runs."
The image of the news item that "The Gazette" put about cricket on 8/24/1888. This is a great piece of history in Colorado.
Scorecard of the Denver's innings. It is probably the only Cricket Scorecard in Colorado, that does not have an Indian in it!
Scorecard of the Colorado Springs' innings.
After almost a century of that game cricket in the centennial state took a giant leap, when Mike Reily and Vinod Malhotra along with some friends started what we now call "Colorado Cricket League". Mike Reily, one of the founding fathers of the league, as of 2009 is still very active in the league. In its early days games were played on un-cut grassy pitches and organization of the games was difficult. In 1985 CCL adopted the concept of neutral umpires. It was not until 1994 that CCL started to play games on concrete based wickets with matting or carpets. The level of enjoyment of games went up considerably.
In 1994 CCL was officially incorporated as a non-profit organization. CCL constitution was authored by Mike Reily and Adam Bell, and is still used in the league to run its day-to-day business.
CCL caters to the cricketing needs of its about 300 members by organizing an annual cricket tournament that runs from May till September.
CCL has teams all along the Front Range; as far north as Fort Collins and as far south as Colorado Springs. Players come from all corners of Colorado and the neighboring states to enjoy playing cricket in Colorado.
In 2004 CCL, with the help of Mike Doig launched its web site (www.coloradocricket.org), the web site is with a doubt the best Cricket League web site in the USA. Sneak a peek it speaks for itself. CCL is actively trying to make the web site code customizable, so that other cricket leagues in USA (if they wish to purchase) can also adopt the code to meet their needs.
CCL is committed to spreading cricket among the young (and not so young) citizens of Colorado. One of the goals of CCL is to augment its player base to 500. That will almost double its membership. To do so, CCL has started a pilot program called Tennis ball Cricket. The objective of the program is to attract a plethora of tennis ball cricket teams in Colorado and unite them under CCL with the hope that this will serve as a nursery for the budding cricketers.
Raymond Mascarenhas is credited for being the person to introduce the TennisBall Cricket League in CCL in 2004 that so many players enjoy till today.
CCL has seven member clubs and eight teams, we are very hopeful that this year we will add one more team.
In 2005 CCL will concentrate on investing its time and energies in popularizing cricket among young Coloradans.
CCL participated in the Central Western region’s annual championship in 2004 and won the plate trophy.
This year(2005) we are hosting the championship of the Central West Cricket Board. Games will be held in the cities of Fort Collins and Colorado Springs.
Read more about Colorado Cricket League at Wikipedia
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