The city of Split on Croatia’s Dalmatian coast will play host this week to the inaugural Mediterranean Cricket League (MCL), European cricket’s newest ICC approved T20 tournament…
The MCL will be held from 2-5 June at the home of Sir Oliver Cricket Club in Split and feature teams from Croatia, Montenegro, Romania, Ukraine and India. The Indian team participating in the tournament in Split will feature former Indian test cricketer Abey Kuruvilla. Kuruvilla played 10 tests for his country and played along side one of the game’s greatest players of all time Sachin Tendulkar.
Former Australian cricketer Simon Katich, who is of Croatian heritage, is the MCL Ambassador, whilst the Sir Oliver Cricket Club in Split and the Croatian Cricket Federation are co-hosting the tournament.
It will be the second taste of international cricket in Croatia in as many months. Early in May 10 teams gathered on the island of Vis to play the annual Vis International Sixes tournament.
Whilst cricket was first played over 200 years ago in Croatia, when Napoleon’s naval forces ruled the Mediterranean prompting the English to send Captain William Hoste and his battle armada to the Croatian island of Vis to set up base and play in their spare time, it has only been since the late 1990s that the game has really been played. Today there are 3 clubs in the country – in Split, Vis and Zagreb.