Following the success of a trip across the border to Annemasse in France by Geneva Cricket Club late last year to play a cricket match against young refugees based there, a series of indoor cricket matches has been organised between the two teams.
With the support of AncrAGes, the city of Annemasse, the organisation ARIES and Geneva Cricket Club, the latest match took place on Sunday 22 January (2pm - 5pm) at the indoor facilities Gymnase Robert Sallaz (2 rue Albert Curioz, 74100 Annemasse, France).
Entrance to the event was free of charge but any profit raised was for the benefit of the young refugees based in Annemasse.
Tamimount Sammar of AncrAGes wrote after the event, "Yesterday was absolutely great for everyone and AncrAges is very pleased with the afternoon routine. Above all, we measured how much the young people of CAOMI were happy and thankful for this moment...Many thanks to the city of Annemasse, to Julien Beauchot and Claude Marzin especially, and to all those who contributed to the success of this project, particularly Anser (Geneva Cricket Club) and his fabulous team"!
by Darius Rao
It had been some two months since the refugees arrived in Annemasse, where they are being taken care of by the Reception & Counseling Center for Juveniles.
Quickly realizing that these young people were passionate about cricket, Tamimount Sammar (an active volunteer from AncrAges) had the ingenious idea of a series of cricket matches.
There was so much enthusiasm shown at the initial meeting in December that that it was decided to organize a bigger event, this time open to the public.
Thanks to the support of AncrAGes, the city of Annemasse and the ARIES association, a full game took place on Sunday 22 January 2017 at the Robert Sallaz indoor hall in Annemasse.
For the occasion, the young refugees formed an exclusive team: the Annemasse Cricket Club. And what a team!
In front of more than fifty spectators, the event began with an explanation on the basic rules of cricket. The coin toss was then won by Geneva CC and the players of Annemasse were put in to field. The match was umpired by Geneva Cricket Club president Hascal Gollop.The captain of Annemasse and some other players demonstrated an undeniable talent and wickets soon began to fall! With several players eliminated, the Geneva Cricket Club was in a delicate situation. Thanks to the sang-froid of Captain Anser and the support of Khurram (vice-captain) and Ahmad, Geneva CC managed to score 121 for 8 in their allotted 16.0 overs.
Annemasse immediately took things in hand and scored as hard as they could. Even if it was not enough for them to win (85 for 9 in 16.0 overs), it did not matter. The spirit and the extraordinary atmosphere of the match were the real winners! The spectators were was also fantastic and the organization of the event simply perfect. The food provided by the volunteers was also delicious.
The match ended with a medal and trophy presentation, followed by warm thanks, all accompanied by an alpine horn player.
Geneva Cricket Club would like to thank the association AncrAges from the bottom of their hearts for making it possible to realize this initiative. Geneva very much enjoyed participating and hope that this will be repeated in the future. Sport can play a significant integration role for migrant communities and we are proud to have contributed a little. Perhaps this is the beginning of a beautiful story?
Note: This report originally appeared on the Geneva Cricket Club website in french
An article on the event was published in Sunday's edition of the newspaper "The Dauphiné".
You can also read the report from Geneva's first excursion to Annemasse in December 2016.