Asian migrants take cricket to Germany


The refugee crisis in the Asian and Middle Eastern countries meant that many people from various parts of the world traveled to countries like Germany to seek asylum but this meant that they brought their culture with them for which includes, for instance, cricket.

3-4 years back there were only a handful of teams and players registered with the German Cricket Federation but now with passing time the numbers have become more significant and according to the Federation the number of players currently are 500 who are part of 220 team all over Germany.

“It’s going crazy!” says the federation’s manager Brian Mantle according to BBC. Every day he receives enquiries from refugees and social workers keen to set up new teams. Germany, he says, has been overwhelmed by the migrant crisis.

“They can’t offer refugees things like German lessons, they can’t offer them schooling. So they’re sitting in their homes doing nothing.” s

One of the newest clubs is in the eastern town of Bautzen who was founded and coached Ahmad Irshad who is a Pakistani. He has been trying to educate the young players about the rules of the game although it has been tough because of the lack of exposure towards cricket in this country as the focus is more towards football and the German side is also the current world champions in this particular game.

“They said this is Germany: no-one plays cricket here,” says its coach and founder Ahmad Irshad.

“It was really strange and a really new thing for them. I tried my best, I tried to convince them and tried again and then I was able to make them understand.”

Ahmad Irshad
Ahmad Irshad

The cricketers have found it difficult to train and learn the game effectively because of the lack of cricketing gear which is why they rely on makeshift equipment and other donated kits. The club also has to use the football facility of the local club because they do not have their own cricket ground but judging with the way cricket is progressing in this part of the country and Germany in general we can be rest assured that it is matter of time before Germany will also surface as a a part of the international cricket fraternity.

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