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Opinion: How this very English sport found a home in America

Editor’s Note: Ashish Ravinranis a Singaporean-Indian writer and filmmaker based in New York City. His upcoming feature documentary, “Chasing Cricket,”follows the story of immigrant teens playing in an NYPD-run cricket league. The views expressed in this commentary are his own. Read more CNN Opinion.


For one morning on June 9, 2024, the eyes of the cricketing world will fall on a public park on Long Island, New York. India and Pakistan will take on each other in the Men’s T20 World Cup. Don’t worry. Tickets are still available for a mere $2,500 to $10,000 (other matches start at $200).

Ashish Ravinran

Just as cricket is the second most-watched sport in the world, India-Pakistan matches are some of the most-viewed sporting events globally. But there’s much more to cricket in America than the India-Pakistan rivalry.

The fact that the US is co-hosting the World Cup for the first time, with the Caribbean, should be seen as a coming-of-age for what has been a neglected sport here.

Now the cricket world wants to know:Is the sport settling in for a long stay at the crease, or is this just a flashy little cameo? In other words, can cricket ever take root in mainstream America?

Beyond the glamor of this international tournament and cricket officialdom, there is another America; one where cricket has been thriving organically for years, nurtured by South Asian and Caribbean immigrants.

When I moved to New York in 2012, I didn’t expect to find much cricket here. My own cricket career peaked when I represented Singapore at the Under-13 level and ended after a forgettable stint for my Oxford college.

But I soon realized that one of the unexpected pleasures of cricket in America was seeing the sport bloom between the