In a year where fortunately there weren’t any interruptions as such been because of the global pandemic, perhaps the most major piece of news from America was that of the Minor Cricket league.
If anything, 2022 did prove to be a year where the continent obsessed with Baseball and Basketball took a giant step towards cricket- and how.
Several new leagues, which are assisting the sport’s growth in popularity and significance, find themselves enveloping the planet. One among them was this year’s Minor League Cricket.
The Minor Cricket League, lest it is forgotten, saw its second season wherein the Seattle Thunderbolts defeated the Silicon Valley Strikers to claim their first MiLC championship.
Oh boy what a feeling that was.
Despite making it to the finals in both of the seasons under the leadership of former India Under-19 captain Unmukt Chand, Silicon Valley Strikers were unable to successfully defend their championship title this time.
The All-Round Play Of Rahkeem Cornwall
Cornwall is a well-known cricketer from the Caribbean who is renowned for both his powerful hitting and effective bowling abilities. He is one of the marquee MiLC players who has already made an appearance at the international level. The big man, who played for the Atlanta Fire, scored 531 runs in just 13 innings while also scooping up 14 wickets thanks to his bowling abilities. He was awarded as the southern division’s most valuable player for his all-around excellence in the 2022 season.
Phani Simhadri- MVP of the MiLC
Picking up 46 wickets in just 18 games is something very hard to achieve, but Phani Simhadri, a native Indian have done it and won the MVP award for the 2022 season. Phani is a left-arm seam bowler who was instrumental in the Seattle Thunderbolts winning their first Minor League Cricket championship.
Against the Silicon Valley Strikers and the Dallas Mustangs, he collected one four-wicket haul and one five-wicket haul, respectively. He has also struck a hat-trick, which he accomplished against Hollywood Master Blasters. With a 5.9 economy, he has bowled remarkably well, demonstrating why he was granted the MVP award.
Unmukt Chand- Highest Scorer of the tournament. Once again!
Unmukt Chand, former Indian U-19 World Cup champion and captain is having a great time in the USA. In the first season of the MiLC, Chand was the highest scorer of the tournament and won the maiden title for his team Silicon Valley Strikers. And even this time he scored the most runs and took his team to the finals but ended up on the losing side.
He smashed 693 runs including six half-centuries and one century. Also, he became the highest scorer by scoring just a run more than his teammate Shehan Jayasuriya who smashed 692 runs in just 17 innings.
Harmeet Singh- The Standout Performer
You must have heard this name, a fast bowler who used to play for Deccan Chargers and Rajasthan Royals. Yes, it’s none other than Harmeet Singh, the captain of Seattle Thunderbolts, the MiLC 2022 champions. Being a captain, he contributed in every way possible for his team.
In 13 innings, Harmeet smashed 294 runs with a brisk strike rate of 226 including one half-century. He also picked up 22 wickets, which helped his team winning the title.
Chandrapaul Hemraj- Highest individual score of 2022 season, 130
Hemraj is a Guyanese cricketer who was named in the West Indies squad to play against India in 2018. He is a left-handed batter who smashed the highest individual score of the MiLC 2022 season. He took just 54 deliveries to smash 130 runs against Empire State Titans and helped his team; New Jersey Somerset Cavaliers reach a mammoth total of 233, which ensured a comfortable win.
These were the Minor League Cricket’s greatest noteworthy performances from the 2022 campaign. According to the current proposal, Major League Cricket is expected to be introduced in 2023. The Knight Riders group has already taken the initiative to contribute in the stadium’s construction and will likely have their own team in the Major League.
Cricket appears to be expanding in the USA, which is considered as a major sports hub, and young players will gain the necessary exposure and possibilities to express themselves on a larger scale. May the sport continue to enthrall its audience.