Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Cleveland Cricket and 2010...

As we get into February, the thoughts of the upcoming cricket season ping my mind. For months now, we have not had an opportunity to step on to the cricket green. There is this burning urge to get to cricket soon...

Last year we ended up being the champion side in the Michigan League. I get flash backs of some of our cricketing moments we had this past year and it feels great because we ended up on top.

Ani and some of our team mates took time to go to the Michigan League presentation ceremony held in MI. I could not go due to work commitements. Ani was kind enough to hand me my little cup of joy! Its a pretty thing with marble base having our name/clubname engraved. It went right into the spot where Tahreem (wifey) can see it often so she is supportive as the next season unfolds :) ..that my friend is the key....

Winngin the Michigan League was great no doubt, but when I turn around and look at our club's status in Ohio (at the Midwest Tournament), unfortunately its not that great. Infact over the last 3 years or so our Club's reckoning in Ohio has not been that uplifting.

There are probably many reasons of why we arent that big a force in Ohio nowadays and we can debate on it but before that I ask myself why is the Midwest Tournament important to me as an individual and to the club as an organization?

Several reasons come to mind.
1. We live in this state - and not sure if this is a good metaphor but there is meaning to when people say 'charity starts at home', similarly I would say 'recognition and respect begins at home'. So when immediate cricketing circles in this state talk they relate easily to the Midwest Tournament as the battle ground (atleast at this time). So for me as an individual I get to compete with folks from this region (some of whom I have come to know over the past few years). And as a club it means - we need to stamp our authority in our home region and do so on a consistent basis before we become a force in the greater regional spectrum.

2. We have invested a lot of our time and attention to the Midwest Tournament, and it is safe to say that it is that participation from teams like us, which has taken Midwest Tournament to the levels it is at today. And if we as a club do not work hard, we will be talked in the 'past' and 'lost' tense. Something I dont want to be associated with and something which I dont think the Club wants to take as a tag going forward We need to step up our levels.  

3. Yes playing in other tournaments is definetly an important thing - for us to grow, to try something new and to experience different conditions. So make no mistake, we will need to continue expanding but at the same time, we need to put proper emphasis within our state

With the above said, and having played couple of seasons at the Michigan League, I am planning to take part in the Midwest this season. I know that I will miss the Michigan League (as I have come to enjoy a great deal of professionalism, fairness, and passion in that league). But I think for my own reasons and for my club I want to see us do really well at the Midwest. Whatever it takes....

=suhail=
Feb 2, 2010

11 comments:

  1. dude, you are president of the club!! at least you should think globally... i thought you will take us to next level but you are planning to tkae us back to old days... i am not going to vote you for this term!! :)

    Pratik

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  2. participating in MichCA was based more on feedback from everyone and not any one person's decision! Just coz we live in Ohio doesnt mean we need to play in a particular league. Moreover Midwest league is not just a Ohio confined league! We have put correct emphasis on Midwest. We do have 1 team. If that team doesnt live up to standards I dont think you can blame the Michigan Team and its mgmt for that! Please be more responsible in your blog...your comments could add unnecessary confusion and/or stir up controversary around Mich vs Midwest leagues!

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  3. Cleveland Cricket Club senior memberFebruary 7, 2010 at 4:28 PM

    Suhail,

    "charity begins at Home" !!!! What a cheap hypocrite comment this is dude...especially when all of us are away from "HOME" working here in USA paying taxes here!!!!

    Puuhlease dont bring unnecessary divisions within "sport"...cricket has no boundaries and no regions. I personally enjoyed the MichCA experience under Ani. Hats off to him to have the vision and taking the time to give us an experience of playing in another league. Midwest league is very one dimensional...where everything is always about COLUMBUS! I enjoyed MichCA where with Ani's contacts and relationships we have gotten perhaps one of the best neutral experiences ever while Ive been a part of this club. Look at their grounds, their umpires, their honest leadership, plus even their teams are so much more focussed on cricket rather than cheap behavior as we see so often with Midwest (barring FHCC team). Frankly without Ani's efforts, I really dont see this club having a good cricket experience. It will be Midwest and Midwest and cheap politics and cheap antics from players within the club. Atleast by playing in another league we didnt have the same old team1 vs team2 cheap battles!

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  4. Suhail...I follow your blog and have njoyed it. I would as a humble request say "please dont say something that would create unnecessary work for someone else"....
    decision to play in MichCA was based on a vote if you recall correctly...and more than 18 people said they want to play outside Midwest!

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  5. First, thanks for taking the time to comment.

    I am a little surprised and definetly taken aback by some comments. Obviously, I have an opinion of mine but I did go back and read my article. And I read again. And after doing that, I can only say that I cannot defend something that I havent written or implied.

    Nowhere in my thoughts - implicit or explicit-is there any word which suggests divisiveness. Infact it talks about why it is important for us to work towards improving our standing in Midwest

    Nor is there anything in there that suggests playing in Michigan League was wrong. I had no hesitation to say YES to participate in it. And I still stand by my vote. And in the article I have clearly stressed the need for us to expand our horizon.

    Nevertheless, I dont expect each and every soul to agree with my opinion and each has an opinion (and in some cases out of context assertions) and I get it. But if I may highlight one thing in my article - it is that single sincere acknowledgement that Midwest is a tournament we play in and if we play we should try and do really well.

    Hope that helps. Again this is not a defence but an attempt to highlight the point I had made.

    =suhail=

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  6. Wow! I just read this blog entry and the comments attached to it and just want to say I am really surprised and taken aback by some of the attacking comments made against Suhail. This is supposed to be a blog and is called Suhail's blog and blogs are supposed to represent a person's opinions which people can agree with or disagree with. If you don't agree with it then you can let the person know in a nice manner but to tell that person to censor his comments on his own blog is kind of absurd and amusing.

    Just to make sure that I understood what Suhail was trying to say I just read Suhail's blog entry again and basically what he was trying to say is that he enjoyed playing in the Michigan league and had a great time being part of a championship team with so many fond memories to look back on. And now he wants to play in the Midwest league 'cause this is one league where we haven't come close to winning a championship in for a long time. He believes that this is the league we have been a part of for a long time and it only makes sense that we finally make our presence felt in this league. I agree there could be more so called Dirty politics in Midwest but when you are on the ground playing it is not the politics that makes you win or lose it is how you play. So if we haven't won a Midwest championship in all these years it is not because of the dirty politics it is because we were not good enough on the ground.

    Suhail is looking at it as a new challenge to be a part of which I don't think anybody should hold against him and that doesn't mean he wants everyone else wants to do the same or that he is influencing everyone else to follow him. If he wants our Cleveland Cricket Club to represent strongly in the Midwest league and finally win a championship then I hope all the senior members will want to encourage that thought process. I hope that senior members who made comments above don't think out club is only about one team. I bet there are a lot of players who were on the Michigan team last year who would like to play in the Michigan team again 'cause to them it is an even bigger challenge to win the championship again two years in a row. Getting to the top is tough but staying there is even tougher. It is all about one's preference. After all who knows Suhail might want to play in Michigan again in a couple of years after he plays in the Midwest league.

    To accuse Suhail of a making a cheap Hypocrite comment about "charity begins at home" and some of the other comments made by the Senior cricket member are just uncalled for and absurd! I really wonder if this person really is a senior member from the team that I played in last year. I can't think of any body from that team making such attacking comments to Suhail and May be that is why this person decided to hide their identity.

    Sorry for the long comment, but I couldn't help make a comment about it. Remember guys this is Suhail's blog and blogs are about opinions weather you agree or disagree and I think we can all agree on that:)

    Later,
    Manu

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  7. Wah Suhail bhai, really like your article and to a large extent agree with your point and the reasons. I wish all see it that way. You bring up a sensitive point very cleanly and with no finger-pointing. But still how silly are some reactions/comments by some so-called seniors.

    wow, so much fire and insecurity from our own club mates. I guess they do not want any questions to be raised against their so called 'authority'. With such attitudes around, club ki toh waat lagne wali hai. This is not a club made by or run by one guy! Its a 'club' - remember.

    I was kinda concerned of how you'd react to them but as I read your response, you did not stoop down to their level but responded very gracefully. Way to go!

    Please continue writing. I enjoyed it.

    - not so senior, but still a member!

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  8. I was asked to read this interesting development in Suhail's blog after someone pointed out that Suhail is being attacked :)

    I guess just as Suhail is entitled to voice his opinion so are others! I have personally played in Midwest 5 yrs and there was only 1 year we came close to winning it. I too would love to see us lift the Midwest Championship. But at what cost is the main question...from our overall club and what it brings to us as a club. I have always said this and belive fully that I can play cricket and enjoy it only because we have a great club to represent! Without the club I will have no proper avenue to enjoy this passion. We as a club have 30+ members, and the challenge each year is how to constitute the two teams. Historically we have tried best to make sure people enjoy their cricket and thereby made teams based on players' preference of where and under who they prefer to play. If we want to constitute two balanced teams we cannot satisfy personal requests of who to play with and where. It will have to be based on a very neutral aspect of dividing top bats and bowls equally with a genuine wk for each team! But Im sure that approach will cause a raucous. If we continue that approach of asking everyone their preference, we will keep submitting ourselves to unfortunate comparisons. I hate to benchmark my team and my performance vs someone else! At the end of the day I want ea of my team to be able to say "Im proud of what I tried on the field". If we can say each say that championships will follow us no matter what league.

    Suhail - your point about Midwest is valid. CLCC needs to win it at least once. As you say "Inshallah" this year if thats where our club wants to participate, lets make it happen. I still would like to continue the relationship we have built with MichCA. It takes a lot of effort to build a relationship like this, one year of absence will break that cord to some degree.

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  9. Suhail,

    First of all my apologies for not having kept up with your blog and your writings. The blog and your recent posts were brought to my attention just last night. I have just read some of them this morning and I find them written from the heart and certainly, very well written. Congratulations and great job!

    In regards to this particular blog entry, I understand EXACTLY where you are coming from. Having made a mark in one league, you want the Club to carry that success to the tournament that we have not won since 1999. MCT is the tournament that, historically speaking, started it all and we should aspire to perform better in it. And that is fair. I do not see any "finger pointing" or "politics" or anything like some of the respondents seem to have alluded.

    As evidenced by the long gap in an MCT Championship, sometimes a repeat performance is more difficult since it begins to show a consistent side, a winning formula and shows a Club whose membership's goals are clearly aligned.

    So I would call for all of us to dig deep and perform to the best of our abilities so that we bring BOTH trophies back to Cleveland in 2010. And then go on to repeat (or 3-peat for the MichCA team) in 2011. Let's work on bringing more consistency into the teams and how we play cricket.

    Regards,
    Rajan

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