With great weather and year-round fixtures, what’s not to love about cricket in San Diego, California but growing their membership over the past decade up to 22 teams and 500 players hasn’t been without significant challenges.
The San Diego Cricket Association (SDCA) hosts matches adult (with some youth players) T20 matches in 6 or 7 public parks across the city and recently purchased two 2G Flicx Pitches which were re-configured to create 5 batting ends (2.6m x 10m in size). The 2G Flicx Pitch has solved a couple of the key facility problems facing the SDCA…
- As the public parks are used for other sports like soccer and American football, the grass generally contains minor bumps and undulations. Using the 2G Flicx Pitch MITIGATES SURFACE IMPERFECTIONS and as a result the quality of cricket has increased, and the games are more competitive.
- Compared to using Jute matting (formerly used by the SDCA), the 2G Flicx Pitch is a much FIRMER, HARDER SURFACE, so the ball comes onto the bat nicely and the pitch doesn’t need replacing every season, which makes it very cost effective. Batsmen no longer face the peril and unpredictability of either low bouncing balls or balls around the head as the wicket is consistent and realistic.
- The SDCA has strengthened relationships with the city authorities as by using the 2G Flicx Pitch there is REDUCED WEAR AND TEAR ON THE GRASS UNDER SURFACE in the park so minimal maintenance costs because of hosting cricket in these public areas.
- EASE OF INSTALLATION AND STORAGE. The SDCA found the Flicx Pitch easy to install – in fact they took the versatility of the product one step further and purchased the component parts and built their own bespoke batting end sizes to suit player requests for a wider wicket.
Player feedback has also been very positive as SDCA president Aditya Sehgal explains. “Batsmen like playing on the 2G Flicx Pitch wickets as they produce even bounce and good pace which has increased the level of competitiveness in our matches and the ball comes onto the bat nicely so shots like drives can be executed in confidence. We are very satisfied with how the 2G Flicx Pitches are working for us”. With the huge number of leagues now operating in California Aditya is sure colleagues from other leagues can benefit hugely with the introduction of the Flicx Pitch in their locations.
So, what’s next for cricket in California? With the creation of Cricket USA, Aditya would like to see more support filtering down to help grow the game locally and would welcome help convincing city authorities of the value of the sport and resources to develop more junior players. In addition, help creating, and funding suitable facilities will be vital whilst the other part of the puzzle would be more support for top players looking to take their skills to the international arena where players still are self-funded. Perhaps one day we will see a SDCA player in the Big Bash or IPL?? certainly with the passion for cricket displayed by Aditya and his colleagues, anything is possible.
You can follow the SDCA at http://sandiegocricket.com/