Player of the year Charan Singh (center) poses with

2013 Awards Banquet
By Anurag Bhai
Washington Cricket League hosted its 2013 Awards Banquet at the Clarion Hotel near National Harbor on Dec. 14, 2013. The turnout was very good with 100 plus members attending. All the teams that were receiving trophies and individual awards were present in good numbers. The Executive Committee, dressed in formal attire, greeted all attendees as they walked in. Tables were reserved for the various teams and most people had arrived by 7:45 pm.

The special guest for the evening was the

That said, Tariq Qureshi gets out of control and he did so this time as well. There were several times when he interrupted speakers with his antics. You could see visibly uncomfortable Executive Committee members at his antics. Several of them stated to me after the presentation that “We had the CEO of USACA here. This type of behavior leaves a very bad impression about our league and its members.” I don’t know if there are any plans by the EC to address this issue.

Shakeel Yusuf did a very good job as the host of the show. He kept the crowd involved and entertained with his cricket jokes, one at my expense, and asked a few trivia questions. So take a bow Mr. Yusuf for a job well done!

Next came the various individual trophy presentations followed by the team trophies. As the names were called out, the recipients of the awards excitedly went on stage and proudly received their awards. Ibrahim Ali was kept very busy with his picture taking duties. It was interesting to see the reaction of the teammates of individuals when their names were called out for the award. Several of them stood up and enthusiastically clapped and/or whistled loudly to show the support and appreciation for their teammate’s achievement.

I won’t delve into all the awards as they have already been published. The idea here is to present a flavor of how the evening went. However, I would like to highlight a few awards that were not published beforehand.

I was very happy to see Ammar Khan win the PD All-rounder award. He was truly the best all-rounder in the PD and a very deserving winner.  His teammates were extremely pleased at this honor. Vikings had another reason to cheer when Nail was declared the Captain of the year in the PD. Congratulations to Nail and to the Vikings Cricket Club for a successful and memorable year.

Mikey Alexis (left) collects an award.

Rikin Parikh won the Captain of the year in D1 and his teammate, Shahid Hanif, winning All-rounder of the year honors. UMBC had a great year and this was reflected in the number of team and individual honors for this team. Many congratulations to the team and all its members. Rikin is a great guy and I’m very happy for him. His leadership transformed this team into a worthy champion. However, UMBC’s special evening didn’t end here, Minhaj Shahid, along with Charan Singh, won the Player of the Year honors. This is the highest individual award in the WCL and it was fun to see all the UMBC players jumping with joy when the award was announced.

Many congratulations to Charan Singh for winning several individual awards, including the coveted Player of the Year. His consistent performance is testament to his hard work and dedication. Take a bow Charan for being the brightest star among so many bright stars in the WCL.

Division 2 Captain of the year honors was no surprise at all. It went to the very deserving Ajay Natrajan of Potomac winning. What Potomac did this year is unprecedented and deserves all the accolades. Rhodri McAlmont won the All-Rounder of the year in this division.

The umpire of the year honors went to Mr. Abdul Qadir.

Mr. Ram Raghu presented his own (personal) award to Vijay Malela who had secured the highest marks in North America and the Caribbean in the international umpiring exam. Many congratulations to Mr. Malela. Mr. Raghu also presented his Cricketer of the Year award to Imran Awan.

Srikanth Kucherlapati had announced, at the beginning of the year that he would be giving an award to the “Most Promising Bowler” and that award went to Madhu Bylapudi of Falcons cricket club.

The WCL recognized players who represented the United States in international cricket this past year with a plaque. Mr. Beasley handed out these recognition plaques.

With all the awards given out, the 2013 season came to an official end. Overall, it was a fun evening that everyone enjoyed. It was a great opportunity for everyone to meet as league mates and not as competitors and congratulate those who had exceptional performances during the cricket season.

I want to end by wishing all WCL members happy and safe holidays and look forward to seeing you on the field next year. Till then, so long!

Story courtesy of

Some of the guests in attendance.