To celebrate Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav, the High Commission of India in the UK and Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FICCI) UK organised a first-of-its-kind friendly T20 match at the Indian Gymkhana, London.
The event, also a show of support for Team India participating at the Birmingham Commonwealth Games 2022, ended in a five-run win for FICCI UK last week. The High Commission team was captained by the Acting High Commissioner of India to the UK, Sujit Ghosh, who was also adjudged the Man of the Match for a valiant 43 not out despite being hurt during the game.
“The friendly match between the two teams is part of the various activities being organised by the High Commission to celebrate ,” said Ghosh.
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“Such occasions also allow for interactions in an informal setting between the community and High Commission officials where issues are discussed, and queries related to consular and visa matters are responded to,” he said.
The FICCI team included employees of its members such as Carclo Technical Plastics, ICICI Bank UK PLC, MTC Group, Red Ribbon Asset Management, , Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), as well as members of the Indian diaspora. With the match declared a thrilling encounter that went down to the last over, there are plans to make the event an annual fixture in the UK.
“I am delighted that we were able to organise this friendly cricket match between FICCI Council members and the Indian High Commission to mark India’s 75 years of Independence,” said Baroness Usha Prashar, Indian-origin peer and Chair of FICCI UK Council who handed out the trophies.
“It was good to see families engaged in planning and cheering! It was equally fitting that this match took place just before the start of Games. It was a reminder that ‘Friendly Sports’ are not just about winning or losing but more about how we play. They are fun and provide opportunities for informal interaction and help to build better understanding,” she said.
Over 100 members of the Indian diaspora turned out for a family day out to watch the match at the Indian Gymkhana Club in south-west London – a cricket ground dating back to 1916.
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Among those cheering the teams on included Manish Singh, IAS, Managing Director of the Madhya Pradesh Metro Rail Corporation Limited, , CEO & Regional Head of the State Bank of India, Arvid Pedersen, Vice Chair of Red Ribbon Asset Management, Ramkumar Chandrasekaran, HR Director – UK & Ireland of Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), and Parag Anand, Director, Daksh Global, among others.
Pradeep Rawat of the High Commission of India (HCI) XI team was the Bowler of the Match with five wickets for 22 runs in his quota of four overs. Aditya Rathod of FICCI XI was the Batsman of the Match.