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Do you know? Cricket In India Orginated in Mumbai in 1980’s And Parsis Were The First To Play

The first Parsi cricket club to tour England, and beat them in a test match
The origins of Indian cricket could be traced to Mumbai, where the Parsi-Zoroastrians were the first to play the game, paving the way for it to become the country’s most popular sport. 
Parsi’s interest in cricket goes back to 1840s when Englishmen would play in Bombay Gymkhana to pass the time. Parsis set up the Orient Cricket Club in 1848. They used such cricket clubs to cement ties to colonial powers.

 

The Parsi Cricket Club, which was formed a few years later, beat England during their 1886 tour. The club that defeated English cricket teams in Mumbai went to England and defeated them there too.

 

Ardeshir Patel, president of the club, was the first to introduce matches in which the victors were awarded prizes. That’s when the sport stopped being a mere game of bat and ball.

 

Over the years, the number of Parsi players kept dwindling, in line with their declining population and eventually there was just one Parsi player left in the 1970s.

 

Farokh Engineer was the last Indian Parsi player to play for the country in 1975. The last Parsi to have played cricket in the world was Ronald Irani of England, fondly known as Roni who played till 2003.

 

Prashant Kidambi, associate professor in Colonial Urban History, University of Leicester, UK  told all of this while delivering a lecture titled ‘The sporting Parsi and the making of India cricket: Colonial Bombay, 1875-1905’ at the Asiatic Society of Mumbai.

 

 

 

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