INDIANAPOLIS – The United States of America Cricket Association (USACA) announced today the 2014, 2015 and 2016 U.S. National Men’s Cricket Championships will be held at the Indianapolis World Sports Park.
The announcement is a direct result of new leadership at USACA and a decision by the International Cricket Council (ICC) to provide additional backing to help grow the sport of cricket in the United States. Teams representing the eight U.S. regional cricket divisions will compete in the four-day National Cricket Championships not only for the title, but also for a chance to play on the U.S. National Team. 2014 will mark the return of a U.S. National Championships – the first in three years.
“2013 has heralded a new positive direction for cricket in North America with opportunities for cricket to unite and realize its potential as sport for all Americans,” said USACA CEO Darren Beazley. “The 2014 USACA National Men’s Cricket Championship will provide the most talented cricketers in this country with the opportunity to compete in a first class facility against the best in the nation. It will be an important component in USACA’s mission to develop cricket at all levels, from youth to adult, and it will create an occasion to showcase our sport to a non-traditional cricket audience.”
The 2014 tournament, set for late August, is scheduled to be the first high-profile event played on the
new grounds of the Indianapolis World Sports Park on the city’s east side. The park, currently called the Post Road Community Park, is undergoing transformation to create a multi-sport complex capable of hosting elite level play for many of the world’s popular field sports, including rugby, lacrosse, Gaelic sports, soccer, Australian rules football, and cricket. Talks began about hosting this tournament in 2009.
“For over 30 years, Indianapolis has billed itself as the amateur sports capital of the world. This facility and this tournament put Indianapolis in a leadership position as the second most popular sport in the world grows in this country,” said Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard. “Sports competition helps bridge geographic and cultural gaps in a lasting way, and for that very reason, I am proud to welcome USACA and the athletes who represent the sport of cricket in the United States.”
“We are pleased that the City of Indianapolis and USACA have reached an agreement to host these championship events at the World Sports Park,” said Allison Melangton, Indiana Sports Corp president. “Indiana Sports Corp is happy to assist in the planning to develop this event in an effort to grow the game of cricket domestically. We are excited that Indianapolis continues to increase and diversify the sports offerings for our community.”
“Indianapolis and the surrounding areas are home to many residents, like me, who grew up playing cricket and love the sport the same way many people love baseball,” said Parag Pandya, President of the Indy Legends Cricket Club. “News of a national tournament coming here is exciting, and I look forward to the opportunity to be involved in this event in any way that I can.”
“Indy Eleven welcomes USACA’s national tournament. Along with the recent additions of our North American Soccer League team and the International Champions Cup match featuring Chelsea and Inter Milan, this elite cricket event expands Indianapolis’ position as a global sports market,” said Peter Wilt, President and General Manager of Indy Eleven. “The Indianapolis 500 and Indianapolis Motor Speedway long ago established the city’s international presence. The addition of cricket and professional soccer will significantly grow that presence.”