Cricket ground in Kentucky, US named after Sunil Gavaskar
Sunil Gavaskar has truly become India’s global cricket ambassador. The former Indian Test captain, who has a road named after him in Wellington, now has a cricket field in Louisville, Kentucky dedicated to him.
Gavaskar, a popular commentator, has a stand named after him at Mumbai’s Wankhede Stadium. The original ‘Little Master’ was the first to score 10,000 Test runs and 30 Test centuries, a record that was subsequently conquered by Sachin Tendulkar.
The 68-year-old Gavaskar inaugurated the Kentucky cricket field on October 15. It will serve as the home ground of Louisville Cricket Club, which is part of the 42- team MidWest Cricket League. Gavaskar was presented the keys of the ground by Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer.
“I am delighted and privileged at the honour,” Gavaskar said in a statement. “It’s a unique honour to have a cricket field named after me, especially in a country where cricket is not a premier sport,” the legend said.
This is the first time that an entire field bears Sunil Gavaskar’s name. The India-Australia Test series has also been named after him as well as Australia’s former skipper Allan Border. India are the current holders of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy.
It is not uncommon to see roads across the globe named after Indian icons. While West Indies have cricket stadiums named after Vivian Richards and Darren Sammy, Gavaskar has found a place in two nations.
The “Sunil M Gavaskar Cricket Field” in Kentucky is expected to attract local Americans to the game, especially the Indian diaspora.
“We are an increasingly global community, and cricket is already part of our city’s sporting landscape,” said Fischer.
Metro Parks and Recreation director Seve Ghose said the long-term goal is for Louisville to become a destination for national and even international cricket competitions, with plans to eventually build a pavilion and practice facilities.
Ten percent of the funding to create the new fields was raised by Louisville Cricket Club’s 50 active playing members.