Celebrates 150th anniversary with SSC, NCC, CCC and Bloomfield invited for championship: | Page 2 | Sunday Observer

Celebrates 150th anniversary with SSC, NCC, CCC and Bloomfield invited for championship:

9 January, 2022

At the Media launch by the men who matter the most from left: Hussain Jayah (vice president, Colombo Malay Cricket Club - CMCC), Roshan Allang (secretary CMCC), Rizwan Badoordeen (president CMCC), Rilwan Lantra (president Sri Lanka Malay Association SLMA), Rinaldin Rahaman (club captain) and Rilwan Careem (secretary SLMA) Pic by Wimal Karunathilaka

Sri Lanka’s oldest cricket playing club Malay Cricket Club that also produced the country’s first set of national players has decided to celebrate its existence of 150 years with a championship in May at its Padang ground in Slave Island where teams like SSC, NCC, Bloomfield and CCC will be in action.

The Malay Cricket Club, which has a proud cricket history but until now made no approach to showcase their timeless pride, had the honour of producing an all-native (Sri Lanka-born) team in 1920 that made a tour of South India.

In 1895 SS Hassan was the first Ceylonese to find a place in the All-Ceylon team which was exclusively dominated by the British while AC Ahamat captained the first Ceylonese team that met and beat a powerful Australian touring team in 1914.

Current Sri Lanka spin bowler Lakshan Sandakan was the first international cricketer who played for Malay CC in the pre-Test era.

Now, the Colombo Malay Cricket Club (CMCC) is celebrating 150 years of serving the country in cricket and other sports and social activities as the oldest cricket club in Sri Lanka.

At the same time, the Sri Lanka Malay Association will celebrate a hundred years of yeoman service to the community and beyond.

The CMCC have now lined up many activities to celebrate this unique anniversary.

Their main event is a Sixes cricket tournament and will have top tier teams including SSC, NCC, Bloomfield and CCC to name a few. This tournament to be held in May should also see national players joining the past Test captains and players who represent the clubs.

“The anniversary celebration will commence with the launch of the First Day Cover to mark CMCC’s 150th inauguration on March 19, 2022. This will be followed by a cricket encounter between the CMCC and Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) President’s XI.

“The highlight of the celebrations will be a commemorative Charity Dinner on March 26, where the keynote speaker will be Sri Lanka cricket legend and former Maryleborne Cricket Club (MCC) chairman Kumar Sangakkara,” said Rizwan Badoordeen the President of CMCC at a media briefing held at the Padang on Tuesday.

“We have also lined up tournaments throughout the year such as hockey, netball, Sepak Takraw, badminton and rugby,” added Badoordeen.

“We will be holding a cricket charity dinner with the objective of raising funds to buy cricket equipment for junior and senior school teams. We have identified two rural schools in the country and as a leading cricket playing club we want to give back to the cricket community,” said club captain Rinaldin Rahaman.

A badminton tournament for men and women in different age categories will be conducted at the Sugathadasa Indoor Stadium in June to also coincide with the 150th anniversary celebrations.

The CMCC will also conduct a Walk in July and the participants will set-off from the Padang premises in a carnival atmosphere with Papare music, decorated vehicles and fun-loving characters to add colour to the procession. At the end of the parade, a Tag Rugby tournament will be conducted among the Malay associations.

The netball carnival to be held in July will feature a unique system according to Rahaman.

“Play will be controlled by the whistle of the Master Referee while the matches are being played simultaneously on different courts. This type of event has been conducted only in Singapore and we conducted a similar competition two years ago,” he said.

A game that requires football and gymnastic skills and is of Malaysian origin, Sepak Takraw, will be contested in another tournament to be held in August.

A hockey Sevens championship will be conducted in August where eight schools teams and a similar number of teams from the clubs will be invited to contest. The CMCC is also the oldest club affiliated to the Colombo Hockey Association.

History reveals that the Malays were brought to Ceylon by the British and Dutch colonies in Indonesia to work in the Fire Brigade and Police department.

This gave rise to a historic cricket encounter on March 23, 1872 between an All Malay team fielded by the Rifle Regiment and the British Regimental side.

They then formed the Malay Cricket Club pavilion at Rifle Green. This paved the way to be affiliated to the controlling body for cricket in Sri Lanka and participate in local tournaments.