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Before T20 World Cup arrives, check out famous sites that have a role in cricket history




If all you know about cricket is that it might involve a white V-neck sweater and some wooden stumps called wickets, you’re in for a real treat this summer.

The ICC Men’s T20 Cricket World Cup will be held in June, with matches in the Caribbean and — for the first time — in the United States. Eight of the 55 matches will take place at the under-construction Nassau County International Cricket Stadium on Long Island.

This major international tournament is giving cricket fans in New Jersey, along with those in New York and neighboring states in the Northeast, the opportunity to catch powerhouses like Australia, England, and India in action.

However, the monthlong tournament is not the first time that cricket has had a significant presence on these shores. The game has been played here since at least the 1700s. As reported in Smithsonian Magazine, the first published report of a match in North America was in 1751, and soldiers serving under George Washington at Valley Forge played the game during the Revolutionary War.

Cricket grew in popularity in the 1800s to become the most popular sport until the Civil War, when baseball eclipsed it. But its stature in the U.S. was such that the first international cricket match was played in New York City in 1844.

Lovers of cricket history awaiting the T20 World Cup can check out the current location of that 1844 match along with other sites in New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, and Connecticut to enhance their knowledge of the sport.


A short walk from Penn Station, Madison Square Garden, and the 33rd Street PATH Station is a block-long stretch of Broadway where a historic cricket match took place. Between 30th and 31st streets are the site of the former grounds of the St. George’s Cricket Club, where from Sept. 24 to 26 in 1844, a team of American players faced off against a team representing Canada. An audience of at least 5,000 witnessed Canada winning by 23 runs in the match hyped as “United States of America versus the British Empire’s Canadian Province.” The two countries will play each other in the opening match of the T20 World Cup on June 1.


The first time an English cricket team toured North America was in 1859. The 11-man English team was led by George Parr, known as the “Lion of the North,” and they dominated their opponents. One of the five matches on that tour that went from Sept. 26 to Oct. 25 was played in Hoboken. Cricket writer Martin Williamson wrote in ESPN in 2009 about the Hoboken match, “More than 25,000 watched Parr’s XI thrash XXII of the USA by an innings at Hoboken on a poor pitch.” The location, according to Hoboken historian Leonard Luizzi, is now the playing ground for other sports as it is where Hoboken High School’s Kennedy Stadium sits.


New Jersey’s largest city, Newark, once boasted a cricket club. The Newark Cricket Club was formed in 1841 and played at a site on Parkhurst Street in the southern part of the city. Articles from the era detailed how the team played teams from other parts of Northern New Jersey, like Paterson and Kearny, and would travel across the Hudson to play against New York City-area rivals. By the 1940s, the club had faded into obscurity. However, in recent years, a newly-formed Newark Cricket Club has existed, playing in the Millennium Cricket League as of last year.

Staten Island

One of the oldest cricket clubs in the United States has its home on the North Shore of Staten Island. The Staten Island Cricket Club was founded in 1872 and continues to play its matches in Walker Park, as it has since 1886. The club’s reputation worldwide has enabled it to bring some of cricket’s greatest players to Staten Island, such as the Australian legend Donald Bradman, who visited with the Australian National Team in 1932, and West Indies star Garfield Sobers, who led an international team in a 1988 match.


Those living in South Jersey who want to learn more about the history of the second most popular sport in the world can trek over to the City of Brotherly Love. The town is rich in cricket history, with the first American Cricket Club founded at Haverford College outside Philadelphia in 1834. The college’s C. Christopher Morris Cricket Library and Collection is one of the largest archives of cricket literature and memorabilia. The Philadelphia International Cricket Festival takes place on the first weekend of May and brings teams from all over to compete for charity.


Sitting above a Jamaican restaurant on Hartford’s Main Street is a shrine to those who have contributed to the cricket world. The Cricket Hall of Fame was founded in 1980 by Michael Chambers, a native of Jamaica who settled in Hartford in 1968 after he found himself playing for a local team, as he recounted to the New Yorker last year. The walls of the Hall of Fame space hold various cricket memorabilia. Two hundred players have been inducted into the Hall of Fame, including West Indian star Sir Vivian Richards and Pakistan great Wasim Akram.

Ricardo Kaulessar covers race, immigration, and culture for For unlimited access to the most important news from your local community, please subscribe or activate your digital account today.


Twitter: @ricardokaul

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