2015 USACA Elections – Part 2 of the Interview
Newyorkcricket.com has reached out to the six presidential candidates contesting the March 21, 2015 United States of America Cricket Association (USACA) elections, and submitted a list of written questions to them, thereby allowing each candidate an opportunity to craft his written responses. Here is Philadelphia Cricket League’s president Shuja Khan’s response to some of the topical USACA issues.
1. Tell us a bit about yourself and the region or league to which you are connected, and what if any position you currently hold within that region or league?
Before I begin I would like to notify the US cricket stakeholders that I withdrew my name from the posts of First Vice President and Treasurer as of March 7, 2015, and notified USACA that same day.
I am an MBA graduate from California University of Pennsylvania, and have been working for the past 19 years as an ERP Financials Application Consultant/Project Manager/Subject Matter Expert, solving complex business process challenges faced by many Fortune 500 companies as my clients, many with revenues over US$5Billion annually. My US cricket career started with me playing in the WCL in 2000 and then founding the New Castle County Cricket Club in 2003. That club is now the most successful cricket club in the entire Eastern Pennsylvania/Delaware region, with four championship titles in the Philadelphia Cricket League. The club captured three of the four titles under my captaincy of the club.
I founded the Philadelphia Cricket League www.philadelphiacricketleague.com in 2006 and currently serve as its CEO. I would rate the PCL as the best cricket league in America in terms of what we offer; a slick state of the art website with user logins for registration, umpire logins, a built in scoring system, on the fly rankings, and statistical calculations, an online Payment system, and a League Mobile App. The PCL is the only cricket league to offer cash prizes for its 40-Overs/One-Day version to its top winners. So far, we have given $20,000 in cash prizes in the last three years, provided live steaming of our 40-Overs match final on multiple sites for the last two years, Man-of-the-Match trophies for every game (around 100 games every season), a festival-like environment at our final game with free food for all players and spectators, music, live commentary, and rides for the children.
I am co-founder and CEO of a social media site www.Youcricketer.com one of the fastest growing social media sport sites in the world that connects cricketers in any capacity (player, umpire, curator, commentator and many more) to find cricket opportunities globally. The site has been launched few months back and I have a team of 8 salaried personnel working full time on this with its Mobile Apps for IOS and Android set to release this summer. This site has been designed entirely by me, as being a cricketer myself I can understand the challenges faced by cricketers. I encourage every cricketer in the world to register themselves and showcase their skills in their profiles to be known, discovered and connected with any company as club, league, regional board, county cricket and National Cricket Boards globally. Once a user creates an account, they can be easily discovered through the advanced built in search engine and individuals can maintain their interactive status pages and invite others to build their network. It is a complete social media site for cricketers to guide them forward and connect them to the right people and companies, to create a source of earnings for them by using their cricketing skills. The membership to the site is absolutely free and hundreds of users have joined it since its launch a few months back.
I am currently vice president of Cricket Council USA www.CCUSA.info for the past three years. CCUSA under the leadership of Mahammad A. Qureshi (MAQ) does not need any introduction whatsoever. The most successful company in US to have spent over two million dollars in cricket development in the last 14 years from top-notch cricket fields to many cash rich T20 tournaments across US and Canada and their flagship US Open T20 tournament which has been the largest in the world with cash prize of US $100,000. The cash prize of the US Open has been increased from $50,000 to $100,000 since I joined. Many other changes have been implemented on my advice such as the breakdown of cash prize to be given to even those teams that qualify for the quarter-finals, better scheduling keeping in mind the travel distance from one field to another, revamping of their website and giving more exposure to CCUSA and its accomplishments. We have been working in CCUSA since January of 2015 about our Mega Ten-Year Plan to make eight regions/zones and infuse considerable amounts of monies distributed to each league under those regions on established guidelines. If elected to the USACA board, we will bring that funding under the umbrella of USACA. I will let Mr. MAQ announce those dollar numbers in his campaign.
2. Are you running as an independent candidate or part of a slate of candidates? If so, please tell us who are your running mates in this election?
I am part of a slate with MAQ (Mahammad A Qureshi) of CCUSA and working collectively to finalize other three best candidates from the nominees.
3. Why are you running for president of the United States of America Cricket Association (USACA)?
I am not sure if I have a chance for this post not because of my capability rather by the process of voting involved here where it is only in the hands of league presidents who can easily be influenced. An open democratic election system has to be made available to masses to vote, here I mean let all players/members of registered clubs in a registered league with USACA should be allowed to vote. If that process of election is deployed only the best candidate will be elected who the larger cricket fraternity trusts and believes in leading them.
But, why I am running for this post because I believe in my capabilities, skill sets and passion to make USACA a successful entity during my first tenure, because I am from the new school of thought. Cricket has changed a lot, but despite us being in the Number 1 country in the whole wide world, cricket here is run with the mindset of Third-World world country methodologies. The reason for my success as the founder of a successful club, a successful captain, founder of a successful cricket League, founder of a one of the fastest sports social media sites, and VP of CCUSA, is because the very first thing I look at is the culture of people who I am working for. I know how to get the best out of any individual just because of knowing his personal style that helps in making individuals to work together and give their best because they know that their leader understands them completely. Besides understanding the culture something that is needed right from day one, is money. We need money first and then talk later about our plans for seniors, juniors and women’s cricket. I will use my relationship with a few of my work clients to raise funds; I will involve CCUSA for funding and other interested investors. Third I will bring swift technological changes to revamp the entire USACA web site, online player registrations Apps, an online payment system, and social media marketing. It all sums up to three core fundamentals of the advancement of modern cricket; People, Process and Technology.