Mumbai 14th February 2023 : The finals of the Mumbai leg of MI Junior inter-school cricket tournament came to an end on Tuesday with the U-15 girls playing at Wankhede Stadium, and the U-14 and U-16 Boys at Police Gymkhana and Islam Gymkhana.
Sharadashram Vidyamandir (Dadar), (U-15 Girls), SVIS (Borivali) (U-14 Boys) and Anjuman Islam (CST) (U-16 Boys) lifted the trophy after a tightly contested tournament, which was spread over 2 months.
Ms. Jhulan Goswami, Team Mentor and Bowling Coach – Women’s Team of Mumbai Indians, Mr. J. Arunkumar – Assistant Batting Coach, Mumbai Indians along with MCA officials felicitated the winners, runner-ups and the individual honors at the season ending award ceremony at the Wankhede Stadium.
The third edition of the MI Junior Interschool cricket tournament in Mumbai was played across iconic grounds and had participation of over 170 teams with close to 2700 boys and girls participating across three age groups of Boys U14, Girls U15 and Boys U16.
Speaking on the occasion, Ms. Jhulan Goswami, Team Mentor and Bowling Coach – Women’s Team of Mumbai Indians, said “I am really happy to see the participation from the boys and girls across age groups at MI Junior. Mumbai Indians are known for providing opportunities to young talent, and MI Junior is a testament to that, at the grassroots level. My best wishes to all the winners and hope that the spark that MI Junior has lit gives them the motivation to continue the sport and bring laurels to the Nation.”
Mr. J Arunkumar, Assistant Batting Coach, Mumbai Indians, said “Mumbai Indians have always focused on providing youth players an opportunity to showcase their talent, and MI Junior is one of the best to help in their development and encourage their love for the sport. As a coach, to see so many players and coaches develop through the season by competing under pressure, learning and observing, it surely is a great opportunity and a platform for everyone involved. Congratulations to all the participants and special congrats to the winners and I hope to see more children and schools participate in the next season.”
The winning teams are now all set to train and gain invaluable knowledge under the guidance of a member of Mumbai Indians Coaching Team.
Notably, the tournament had about 16 women scorers who were accredited with the cricket associations, officiating across the matches in Mumbai, apart from that around 63 female Physio’s were on the ground to look after the players and guide them through the injuries.
In the Boy’s U-16 final, Abhigyan Kundu (160 off 87) and Aryan Chauhan (113 off 79) slammed destructive tons to lead Anjuman Islam to a commanding 141-run win over Don Bosco High School, Matunga.
Batting first, Anjuman Islam notched up a massive 348 in 40 overs, thanks to centuries by Abhigyan and Aryan. In response, opponents Don Bosco could only manage to score 207 in the allotted 40 overs with Pranav Nijai claiming 3-35.
Elsewhere, Sharadashram Vidyamandir got the better of St. Columba School to win the Girls’ U15 final by 8 wickets.
Batting first, St. Columba School managed to set an unconvincing target of 125, with Mugdha Parte (3 for 19) doing the bulk of the damage. The likes of Ira (56* off 36) and Sarrathi Bhakare (43* off 37) were the architects of the run-chase for Sharadashram, chasing down the target in just 16.2 overs.
Meanwhile, SVIS (Borivali) sailed to a comfortable 8-wicket victory against U-16 winners Anjuman Islam in the Boys’ U-14 final.
Opting to bat, Anjuman Islam were restricted to 164 runs in 40 overs, thanks to Man Of The Match Vardhan Patel’s economical three-wicket haul (3 for 28). Yug Asopa (64* off 107) and Rishabh Gupta (58* off 62) then starred with the bat, scoring unbeaten half-centuries to steer SVIS past the finish line.
MI Junior is an initiative conceptualized by Mumbai Indians owner Mrs. Nita Ambani, who has been the flag bearer of promoting sports as part of the educational curriculum and has been spearheading various grassroots sports initiatives through Reliance Foundation including ESA (Education and Sports for All).