Walter Mencken 11 a.m., May 24
San Diego plays cricket!
Heading into Canyonside Park for my daughter’s softball game, I spied a sport I recognized, but had never seen played in person. “Is that a cricket game?” I queried my partner with an air of disbelief. How did players of this traditional English sport find themselves in Rancho Peñasquitos? “I think so”, he replied, as doubtful about what he was seeing as I was.
We continued on, but I hoped that I could get back to the field before their match ended. Since our game didn’t start for thirty minutes, I deserted my family as soon as we parked. Walking determinedly past girls warming up, boys playing Little League, I discovered that a cricket match was actually being played out here off the 15!
The spectators appeared to be mostly family and team members who were waiting for their “turn at bat” (that’s a guess since I have yet to learn the rules of the sport). Basically my only exposure seeing the game played at all was by 18th century characters in the movie “Becoming Jane”. Interested in seeing more, I continued to watch the match. The pitching technique and speed were unusual and fast.
Bringing myself back to my pressing commitment, I asked a young woman sitting on the sidelines about the match. She told me that the home team was the San Diego Cricket Club and that this was their home field. The visiting team, Citrus Valley Cricket hailed from Riverside. After getting some basic rules, photographs, and making a decision for a return visit to watch and support a lesser-known San Diego sports team; I hurried off to support my own San Diego athlete.
Home games for the club are played at Canyonside Park on Saturdays and Sundays; check the website for their schedule. Two teams comprise the San Diego Cricket Club. There is also a San Diego Cricket Association, which appears to have more teams and other playing locations. The Association’s games are also the more popular T20 format, which is a shorter game. Come out and support the game that America played before baseball!
San Diego Cricket Club: http://sdcricket.org/
San Diego Cricket Association: http://www.sandiegocricket.com/default.aspx