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Cricket at ASU offers students to display passion, provides network opportunities

Cricket at ASU gives students a chance to network through the athletic outlet that they grew up with


"Cricket allows students to show their passion and excitement for the sport and prove to each other what it means to them."

Cricket at ASU is giving students a way to connect with new people through a sport many grew up playing.

It is an opportunity for international students who play cricket to come together. Jeevan Pranav, graduate student studying user experience, said he was able to find a group of people from different countries, which was a good experience for him and made him feel safe. 

Pranav and Pavan Venkata Manjunath Mallipudi, a sophomore studying computer science, started their participation in the cricket tournament at the Polytechnic campus, where they learned to play a game that emphasized teamwork. 

"It's a hobby for me; I get to know a lot of different people," Pranav said. "I get to know the ins and outs of what cricket is, socialize with people and understand their share of playing, and it's a good game. For me, it's a team game." 

The Cricket Club welcomes new students and players to the sport to play in their organization, allowing students to share current players' passion for the sport. 

"We like to get to know who is new to cricket and teach them about how cricket is played so they also get to know more about it," Pranav said. 

Mallipudi sees his participation in the sport as an opportunity to exercise his ability to be a team player and practice his leadership skills.

"It has helped me a lot in terms of working with the team and then knowing my strengths and weaknesses as a team member and as a team captain," Mallipudi said. 

The club played its first tournament on the Polytechnic campus on Feb. 16. The tournament combined Cricket at ASU, the International Student and Scholars Center and the Sun Devil Fitness Center to host a day-long event where students from all campuses play in a bracket. 

"All of them were amazing during the entire collaboration period, and we had a great time organizing this event," Shaurya Manglik, the USG-Polytechnic president and a sophomore studying robotics, said. "We're doing a great job. It’s a very big success, so I'm very happy about that."

Additionally, cricket bleeds into many members’ childhoods, sparking their inspiration from watching it on TV and watching role models they aspired to be growing up. 

"It’s a social life because our whole childhood has been around cricket, right from watching TV to playing on the ground, as well as talking with your peers remotely somewhere," Pranav said. "We like to try to indulge in cricket. So that's how it is a part of our life."

Viraj Pramod Jadhav, a sophomore studying computer science and the vice president of The Cricket Club at ASU, traced back his passion for cricket to MS Dhoni, a famous cricket player from India, saying he was a role model for him. Cricket also provides him relief from other stressors in life. 

"I usually enjoy playing cricket because that's when I don't worry about my assignments," Pramod Jadhav said. "All the other stuff that keeps me consumed."

Jadhav said that he chose to pursue vice presidency because he loves organizing events and believes that it helped him find campus jobs and opportunities that he was able to network and find through cricket. 

Cricket at ASU differs from intramural sports, scheduling matches on the weekends from 3-11 p.m., starting in January and ending in April for the second semester. The club caters to around 300 people.

The club switches rosters every semester, so players will have to socialize with their teammates year-round, giving them those opportunities to network. The second semester final is scheduled for April 20 from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. 

"People find it as an opportunity to make new friends and also find jobs and internships because cricket is a big thing in Arizona, not just at ASU," Jadhav said. "So outside, when people go to play, they're seniors who are working somewhere, and you can talk to them about internships. So this is a big opportunity to socialize for all the students."

Edited by Katrina Michalak, Walker Smith and Shane Brennan

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