May 15, 2006

China

Enter the dragon

Martin Williamson



Today the Great Wall, tomorrow the world. Chinese children get to grips with cricket © Cricinfo Magazine
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No pitches, no cricketers, no infrastructure, but the game is still finding a way in China, as this month's article in Cricinfo magazine by Ranajit Sankar Dam and Wei Jie highlights:

Liu Pingping is not quite John Buchanan, at least not yet. The 47-year-old schoolteacher from Shanghai has never played cricket in his life, and is yet to even watch a match on TV. A baseball player while in college, Liu is one of the 30 former athletes from other ballgames such as baseball, and from track and field, handpicked to undergo cricket training by the Chinese Cricket Association (CCA). Liu was teaching softball to teenagers in Shanghai's No. 3 Girls Middle School when the CCA approached him.

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Martin Williamson is executive editor of ESPNcricinfo and managing editor of ESPN Digital Media in Europe, the Middle East and Africa

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Martin Williamson
Executive editor Martin Williamson joined the Wisden website in its planning stages in 2001 after failing to make his millions in the internet boom when managing editor of Sportal. Before that he was in charge of Sky Sports Online and helped launch and run Sky News Online. With a preference for all things old (except his wife and children), he has recently confounded colleagues by displaying an uncharacteristic fondness for Twenty20 cricket. His enthusiasm for the game is sadly not matched by his ability, but he remains convinced that he might be a late developer and perseveres in the hope of an England call-up with his middle-order batting and non-spinning offbreaks. He is now managing editor of ESPN EMEA Digital Group as well as his Cricinfo responsibilities.

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