Afghan Refugee Fueled Cricket Boom in Germany

Afghan Refugee Fueled Cricket Boom in Germany

Cricket Boom in Germany - Refugee

Pak-Afghan refugee in Germany has fueled cricket boom in country. Germany took 8,90,000 asylum seekers in 2015 and over 40,000 were from Pakistan and Afghanistan. Most of the immigrants from Afghanistan, Pakistan and Sri Lanka are more in to cricket. For most of them Cricket is the only sport that exists in the world. Due to acceptance of thousands of immigrant, Germany has noticed significant amount of people playing cricket. Prior of Asylum seekers moving to Germany, there were roughly around 1500 players playing cricket in 70 teams in total. But now number has increased to 4000 registered cricketers representing 205 teams for 108 cricket clubs. Rise of cricket in Germany is due to increase in number of asylum seekers.

Asylum Seeker playing Cricket in Germany

Chief executive of German Cricket Federation (DCB), Brian Mantle was all praised for this influx by asylum seekers. “The summer has been unbelievable, we’ve had success on and off the field and we’ve attracted sponsors,” said Brian Mantle. “If you name an area of Germany, chances are there is now a cricket club there or one about to be set up. “It’s been quite incredible. We could even be soon watching a feature film… about German cricket and its impact on Afghan refugees.” In 2015, Germany took in 890,000 asylum seekers, among them just over 40,000 Afghans and Pakistanis. Many of them soon asked: “Where can I play cricket?”

Cricket Integrated Asylum Seekers:

95% of cricketers in Germany are immigrants, thanks to talented refuges which resulted in surge in cricket interest. Cricket is a good way to integrate refuges, through a sport they already know. Cricket helped immigrants to adapt to life in Germany, especially to teenagers who couldn't speak German and were completely lost and depressed. Cricket has saved their lives and gave them a purpose to live. “As immigrants we can’t integrate so quickly into Germany,” said Muhammad in German. “But sports are a way to experience our culture on the field. It gives us a sense of belonging, but also a way to contribute something back to our community.” Cricket not only integrated immigrants and Germans but it also connected immigrants from different backgrounds. Afghanistan and Pakistan refugee are bringing cricket passion to Germany and DCB is investing in sports to make maximum out of this cricket enthusiasm.

Afghan refugee bring cricket to Germany

Cricket Development Plans In Germany:

Hans-Heinrich Mai, DCB’s development officer said, "Cricket in Germany has a long history but no tradition". Due to traditional lack of interest in cricket from native Germans there is less money pumped into development of cricket in country. But now DCB is spending money on youth cricket leagues to generate interest of native Germans in sports of cricket. The national German cricket team won a promotion ICC European Division two. “The goal for next year is to win promotion again in division one, which would put us in the world cricket league,” said Mantle. “We wouldn’t be at the elite level, but we would have arrived.”

In near future, Germany might be able to follow footsteps of Ireland and Afghanistan who are knocking on door of ICC for test-level cricket status. Now it is all up to youth in Germany to pick up a bat and ball and start playing cricket. If you are an immigrant in Germany and a registered cricketer and would like to share your experience then please use comments section below. Alternatively, contact us through form if u want to write an article about yourself or cricket in Germany and upload ur cricket photos.
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