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ACF launches North American Championship

Peter Della Penna

January 29, 2014

Comments: 10 | Text size: A | A

New American Cricket Federation chief executive Jamie Harrison, September 5, 2013
Jamie Harrison, ACF chief executive: "It is my hope that this elevated level of competition ... will ultimately result in better cricket throughout the country" © ESPNcricinfo Ltd

The American Cricket Federation (ACF) has announced that it will stage a North American Cricket Championship in Phoenix, Arizona from March 7-9.

The championship will consist of a three-match, 40-over series played between a team representing the Midwest Cricket Conference, winners of the ACF Twenty20 National Championship in Florida last October, and a team from the prestigious Toronto Cricket, Skating and Curling Club.

"It is my hope that this elevated level of competition, along with the first introduction of national structure and context to the American cricket season, will ultimately result in better cricket throughout the country," the ACF's chief executive, Jamie Harrison, said.

"I also expect that this opportunity to compete at higher levels, given to all ACF member leagues, will spur local and national rivalries and create a new level of competitiveness that USA cricket needs to progress."

The matches will be played at Nichols Park Basin, a turf wicket facility in suburban Phoenix that is used by the Arizona Cricket Association. The ACF is also in the planning stages of organising a domestic inter-league competition, tentatively scheduled to get underway this summer, called the American Cricket Champions League that will feed into the ACF National Championship.

"The American Cricket Federation is dedicated to providing greater opportunities for all cricket stakeholders and this is just the beginning of that process," Harrison said.

The creation of the North American Cricket Championship is another step towards legitimacy in ACF's battle with the USA Cricket Association. Formed in 2011, the ACF is a rival governing body to the USACA, which is the ICC-recognised national governing body for cricket in America.

Peter Della Penna is ESPNcricinfo's USA correspondent. He tweets here

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Posted by BruceBaskin on (February 1, 2014, 16:12 GMT)

Finally a group that actually wants to build cricket in the USA, as opposed to USACA politicians who only use the sport as their personal fiefdom. Here's hoping Jamie Harrison and the ACF supplant USACA as the ICC's "go-to" organization in the United States. They certainly can't do any worse than USACA has done.

Posted by   on (January 30, 2014, 17:58 GMT)

Well said, Norris! Bravo, American Cricket Federation!

Posted by   on (January 30, 2014, 17:40 GMT)

I think ACF's philosophy is "If the ICC and the rest of the world has given up on US cricket and wont support us, screw them we'll do it ourselves" and judging from the comments on here, that belief is justifiable. I play College cricket in the US and believe me, it's catching on... sports like soccer, lacrosse, and rugby already are/in the process of becoming franchised, so what makes you think we won't do that with cricket? We have the money and the market ( lots of ex pats and increasing Americans following)

Who cares if the rest of the world wont watch us or list us in fixtures? We'll franchise it like our other sports & develop competition amongst states. Sure we'd love to play against other countries but no one takes us seriously or cares what's happening to our cricket.. look at all of your comments ha

So keep laughing and mocking, we'll get it eventually. 1 problem we won't have is being dependent on other countries for the survival of our cricket. Food for thought haha

Posted by Albert_cambell on (January 30, 2014, 6:18 GMT)

Every year they launch a championship, but nothing takes Its a waste of time to invest money on developing cricket in USA. People are not interested in this game. Instead why dont ICC focus more on devoloping cricket in Nepal, Afghanistan ,PNG, Namibia who has lot of people interested in cricket and they are producing many home grown players as well.

Posted by OttawaRocks on (January 30, 2014, 5:45 GMT)

Why is Canada sending a team from Toronto? Why is it a fait accompli? They should do a tourney before hand with the best team from Canada represented, if not more than one. Actually, instead of having just 3 teams why not have 6 represented and have the tourney over the entire week? Cricket in North America is just so frustrating...

Posted by SolFish on (January 30, 2014, 4:26 GMT)

This will be the perfect time for the other nations to form their own cricket councils, and let the big three play each other, who needs them anyway, if that rule passes, I will no longer be following cricket with the tier system in place, no teams here in America gets demoted for last place, each team here gets to play an equal amount of games. Just as in the IPL, and most sports, teams should be able to offer contracts to players outside of their country, therefore it would become a global sport were competition would become more competitive and standard become higher, in all facets of life or any sport someone must come last, what these fools are saying they don't want any last place finishers, if that is so then the person who finishes first should only compete against himself, imagine having only 2 teams, one comes last, does competition ends there, imagine the Wright brothers giving up flying after a few failed attempts, in order to get off the ground, shame on the ICC.

Posted by AndyZaltzmannsHair on (January 29, 2014, 20:19 GMT)

Lol. Take a look at the top right of this page where it says country fixtures. It states, "NO FIXTURES SCHEDULED". That's the future for associate and affiliate cricketing nations. It's the future for some of the Test nations as well. A nice portent of things to come.

Posted by Cpt.Meanster on (January 29, 2014, 19:54 GMT)

You know what USA, better stick to your tradition of baseball and American football - the true pride and passion of the American people instead of a game invented by the English and financially fuelled by Indians. There is no way USA can improve under the new realities of world cricket. The BIG 3 will assume USA cricket is an imaginary entity in a parallel dimension. I feel sorry for associate cricket as a whole. Sport is meant to be played globally. So there we have it, from 10 countries, cricket will one day be played only among 3 nations.

Posted by AndyZaltzmannsHair on (January 29, 2014, 19:16 GMT)

Why bother? With the new rules you have no access to the highest levels of Int cricket. And Test cricket is a barred entry. Why would any young person bother picking up a bat and ball outside of the big three? At best you'll enter a sport where you're second class citizens with no way ever to be an equal. The game is loaded both on and off the field of play to the big three. A game which will slowly shrink over the coming decades.

Posted by   on (January 29, 2014, 18:47 GMT)

Really hope this takes off. For too long the USACA has seemingly been more interested in petty in-fighting and insulting people on Facebook than in running cricket in the States. Cricket may never become a major sport there, but there's no reason it can't develop as a healthy niche sport.

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