How the Hundred format in AKCAF Professional League is drawing women to cricket

The organisers have also got a big boost after the confirmed participation of UAE international player CP Rizwan

by

Rituraj Borkakoty

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UAE international player CP Rizwan (centre) during the jersey unveiling ceremony. — Supplied photo
UAE international player CP Rizwan (centre) during the jersey unveiling ceremony. — Supplied photo

Published: Thu 11 Jan 2024, 10:54 PM

AKCAF UAE, the All Kerala Colleges Alumni Forum, has been organizing several events over the years in the country.

From community welfare initiatives to cultural events, AKCAF UAE has always brought people together.

The members of this forum also take great pride in becoming the first organisation to introduce The Hundred, the newest cricket format where each team play 100 balls, in the UAE.

“AKCAF Professional League is a cricket tournament we started in 1997 for all Kerala colleges’ alumni who are based in UAE,” said Johnson Mathew, a senior member of the organization.

“We used to play in the 15 overs format. But since 2022, we started the Hundred format, we were the first ones to do this in the UAE.”

This year the tournament will kick off on Friday at DC Stadium, Batayeh, Sharjah with former India pace bowler S Sreesanth coming on board as the event ambassador.

“It’s a big motivation for our people to have Sreesanth supporting us,” said Mathew.

The organisers have also got a big boost after the confirmed participation of UAE international player CP Rizwan.

“CP Rizwan is the first Kerala player to score an international century (for the UAE against Ireland). We are very proud of him,” said Kishan Kumar, General Convenor of AKCAF UAE.

“CP has always been very supportive. He is going to play in our tournament again and it’s a big positive for us.”

As many as 32 teams will compete in the men’s tournament while eight teams will fight for the honours in the women’s event.

“When we started the tournament, we had only two women’s teams. Then last year we had six and this time we have eight teams, the number is growing always,” said Bindu Antony, another senior member of the organization.

“The Hundred format has made a great impact, and I think that’s the reason for the tournament’s growing popularity among women.”


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