USF Cricket Team Wins National Championship
The USF University Cricket Club has been to the national finals four times, but at this year's American College Cricket championship game in Fort Lauderdale, the team was able to bring the gold and glory back to Tampa.
USF is one of the pioneering schools of ACC, with its launch in 2009. Since then, the game has become quite popular among students at USF, especially international students who started playing the game at a young age. A few of them have even said that they chose USF because of its competitive advantage in cricket.
All-rounder on the team, Shaaz Shajani, said "One of the major reasons I applied to USF was cricket, as it is played a lot in Florida. I did my own research on the USF team and I found out that they had some good players and the team was doing well."
With its 87-person membership, the UCC chooses its 15 best players for tournaments. The others are invited to attend as spectators and they help to keep the players in high spirits.
"I have been playing cricket for a long time, so I have a major role to play in the team as not a lot of players are experienced. So it's a good opportunity for both of us to learn more from each other," said Shajani.
The team faced Auburn University on March 16, whom they had previously defeated in the Southeast Regional Championship. Nothing could replace the feeling of winning the ACC championship though.
"The team chemistry we had on and off the field was just amazing. Everybody proved themselves. It felt like a dream come true, to be honest. This was the first ACC for me, but some of my teammates have been going for the past four years, so I would say this championship for them. Go Bulls!" said Shajani.