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San Francisco Consul General Celebrates Inauguration of Cricket Pitch at University of the Pacific

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HI INDIA NEWS DESK
SAN FRANCISCO, CA – Consul General Dr. K. Srikar Reddy inaugurated a cricket pitch at the University of the Pacific’s Stockton campus in Stockton, CA.

Among the 100 attendees were Christopher Callahan, President of the University of the Pacific, and Niraj Chaudhary, the university’s Dean of Libraries.

Reddy emphasized the significance of the pitch for the 450 Indian students, constituting approximately 50 percent of total international students at the University.

“This initiative will undoubtedly attract more students from India to consider the University of the Pacific. I am immensely pleased with today’s event and grateful for the university’s embrace of our culture. This marks the beginning of a great friendship between us and Pacific,” he remarked.

The atmosphere was vibrant, featuring an exhibition cricket match, Indian cuisine, Bollywood performances, and more, celebrating both sport and culture.

“Cricket is akin to a religion for us, and we are grateful to the university for installing this cricket pitch,” expressed Yusuf Ejaz ’24, a native of New Delhi. “This holds special significance for international students; it makes us feel at home.”

Callahan acknowledged that a significant part of the initiative stemmed from listening to students.

“Even before the construction of the cricket pitch, students were playing on makeshift fields and expressing their desire for better facilities,” Callahan explained. “Niraj and I discussed the plan during our trip to India, and he played a pivotal role in making it a reality.”

Cricket had already gained popularity at Pacific, evident from the 93 active members in the university’s cricket club—a number anticipated to rise as the university continues to enroll a record number of international students (now at 13%). Cricket also enjoys popularity in countries such as Pakistan, England, and others represented among Pacific’s student body.

Club members had been utilizing the Main Gym for indoor play—a functional but less than ideal setting.

“We are deeply appreciative of the university’s consideration and efforts in building the cricket pitch. It demonstrates Pacific’s commitment to its students,” noted Devkumar Patel ’24, President of the Pacific Cricket Club. “Back home in India, cricket is a daily affair for us. This new facility will allow us to continue our passion here at Pacific.”

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