When I was a child, growing up in Gaborone, Botswana, I got introduced to the great game of Cricket. My grandfather is one of the most passionate cricketer’s I know, he is the person who instigated the game of cricket in my life. After coming back from school, the first thing was playing cricket with my grandfather, he would bowl and bat with me for nearly an hour before I entered the house to eat and drink, this was almost a daily routine.
Some of my fondest childhood memories are of weekends in Gaborone, Botswana, when my family would sometimes attend Dad’s and Uncle’s regular Saturday and Sunday cricket games. I would go to the nets and play cricket with friends and my grandfather.
Finally the family decided to migrate to Canada in 2006, I travelled miles across oceans, to finally reach my dream destination and carry on with my passion and love for the game. I joined Mississauga Ramblers Cricket Club and started playing cricket for the under 13 team. This is the best thing that happened to me as today 16-year old never lost sight of playing cricket with an ambition of playing top-level cricket and representing Canada in the near future.
I gained recognition quickly and one person who saw the talent and kept on pushing me for better performances is Anand ( Junior Cricket Co-ordinator/Coach), I am grateful to him and all my team mates.
Being an all-rounder – (Batsman/Bowler), over the years have received many outstanding awards at the club level as well as league level, for best bowler, batsman, achieving 6 wicket hauls etc. I was also provided the responsibility of heading the under 13, 15 and 17 team as captain; again being captain we won many championships and were runner-up many times. Altogether during my journey till today, I have received more than 15 specific awards in the 6 years at Mississauga Ramblers Cricket Club.
One most achievable milestone I achieved in the past was leading the Ontario u13 team and becoming champions. Recently I achieved getting selected for the under 17 Ontario Cricket team, the competition was quite fierce but strong determination, hard work and confidence made it possible to achieve the milestone.
In the past 12 months or so, I have established myself as an anchor of Mississauga Ramblers Cricket club playing at different competitive levels; the club’s goal is developing junior cricketing skills, giving juniors the opportunity to play at higher competitive levels in different divisions like Elite, Premier, Second/First Division, Ramblers 20/20 tournament, Under 19 etc.
In summary, the opportunity provided by Mississauga Ramblers has provided me to play and represent at the provincial level, in addition cricket made me a better team player, enhanced my leadership skills, and most importantly kept me physically fit which also amplifies and adds value to my academic career.
Author: Abhay Vashi
Abhay has been a product of our Junior program and has represented Ontario at Junior level, this article was originally published in Mississauga Ramblers 2014 magazine