Nathan Wise ’21
The Indian Subcontinental Student Union recently brought cricket to play at lunchtime, and in only a few months, a surprising enthusiasm for the sport has swept the Brophy community.
With the help of Mr. Londoño and the OEI, the ISSU was able to purchase cricket equipment this year, which was largely kickstarted by the passion of Samson Mathias ’22, founder of the ISSU, and Amit Das ’21, first president of the ISSU.
“Me and Amit, especially Amit, have always been big fans of cricket just because of where we came from, especially where our parents came from,” Mathias said.
Cricket is the most popular sport in India and the second most played in the world. Bringing cricket to Brophy was one of the tangible ways the ISSU could represent their heritage on campus.
It’s also a sport that doesn’t require remarkable athletic strength or prowess. “Anyone can play,” Mathias said.
But cricket was not originally expected to be beloved by various members of the Brophy community, as seen in the variety of students who play cricket at lunch.
“Originally [cricket] started as a small activity that would be played during ISSU meetings,” said Nikhil Kahlon ’22, secretary of ISSU.
“At this point, we were playing under the tent at the AMDG Pavillion and only had about 10 or so people that were still somewhat shaky on how the game even works,” Kahlon said.
However, Kahlon said that he and the other students who were playing cricket at the time were told by a Brophy administrator that they could no longer play under the AMDG Pavillion.
As a result, they moved to the front lawn to continue playing.
“This turned out to be a blessing in disguise,” Kahlon said. “That was when cricket really got going.”
The front lawn has been a popular location to eat lunch among students this year. Different food trucks serve food near the front lawn every day, and with the newly purchased Adirondack chairs, the front lawn has opened up to many more students than in the past.
Once cricket moved to the front lawn, there were plenty of students who saw the ISSU members playing––and many who wanted to get involved.
“I was astonished at how many people wanted to start playing with us,” said Amar Dhillon ’22, historian of the ISSU.
“I knew we would have some onlookers purely because you don’t see people playing cricket every day at your school but the number of students, mainly seniors, that started playing was awesome to see,” Dhillon said.
Teachers and faculty began to hear about the cricket “buzz” to the point that Mathias’s Spanish class spent a period playing cricket during class. Das also noted that Mr. Troy Bartlett, who is a part of Brophy’s security and is often on duty on the front lawn, has occasionally played cricket with the students.
As to why cricket has become so popular, Dhillon mentioned the power of sports to bring people together.
“I think that cricket has really taken off due to the fact that it unites many of us through sport. Even though the sport itself is foreign, playing sports is nothing new to many of us and I think Brophy students have embraced that completely,” Dhillon said.
ISSU members are optimistic about the future of cricket at Brophy and are hoping the interest in the sport will continue to grow.
“I really hope Samson is able to continue this cricket craze into next year and inspire underclassmen to continue it after and, who knows, maybe in three, four years we can actually make or solidify a solid cricket roster for Brophy,” Das said.
“Even though we will be losing some of our most core players next year, I am confident that cricket will continue to be played on Brophy’s campus in the future. Playing cricket goes beyond any sort of club affiliation,” Dhillon said.