Refugees experience harmony through cricket

IT was a cricket match for all communities when the All Nations Social Cricket team travelled to Hobart to compete in the inaugural ‘Don’t Give Up Cup’.

All Nations Social Cricket was established by Abdul Razzaq as a “free-to-join” club for asylum seekers and refugees in Victoria’s Dandenong region.

The team made the special visit to Tasmania to test their skills in the inaugural interstate T20 cricket tournament, which was organised by Tasmania’s Intercultural Sports League (ISL).

ISL founder and president Raj Chopra said the Don’t Give Up Cup was developed to portray the important message of not giving up.

“We wanted to give out the message that no matter what your circumstances are, don’t give up and try your best to give back to the communities around you,” he said.

“The people who participated in the way of sponsorships, playing and organising the award nights benefitted by being part of a first interstate tournament and meeting people from across the state, some of whom don’t have permanent visas.

“Our local teams and players were all very excited to take part as they don’t get many opportunities like this.”

The Don’t Give Up Cup grand final saw All Nations Social Cricket defeated by the Tasmanian Punjabi Brothers Sports Club.

Tasmanian Labor Senator Lisa Singh said the successful visit by the All Nations Social Cricket team showed how multiculturalism was making Australian communities stronger.

Senator Singh said she was “delighted” to make a donation to All Nations Cricket to assist with transport.

“I was even happier to support them in the cup final, which was played at Montrose Bay on 11 January,” she said.

“Multicultural events like this empower migrant communities to both live and share their cultures, while also giving young – and sometimes not so young – migrants and refuges a chance to get involved in sport.

“It is an excellent way for people from different backgrounds to learn about each other and build lasting friendships.

“It also helps support each new arrival in overcoming whatever obstacles they face as they adjust to a new country and society.”

Senator Singh said the Labor Party’s citizenship and multiculturalism policies encouraged events such as this, as well as the attitudes they represented.

“These policies promote social cohesion and economic inclusion among our diverse communities,” she said.

“This ensures that every new migrant has the opportunity to fully participate in Australian life, as well as support the right of Australian citizens to live a life free of racism and discrimination.”

Caption: Internationals Sports League founder and president Raj Chopra, pictured front middle, with The All Nations Social Cricket team.