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  • Oct
  • 04

The Best Under-the-Radar Mumbai College Cricket Rivalries

Author Image Fisto Staff
by Anuj Prabhu
Since many decades, the Mumbai “gharana” of “khadoos”(miserly) cricketers have been regulars in the National team outfit. From the likes of Sunil Gavaskar, Sachin Tendulkar, Dilip Vangsarkar, etc. to the present cricketers like Rohit Sharma and Ajinkya Rahane, Mumbai has produced cricketers of unbelievable caliber and quality. One of the main reasons for this is the highly competitive college level cricket that is played in Mumbai between different colleges.  

Rizvi College 

Rizvi college is arguably the best college in Mumbai for someone who wants to pursue cricket as a career and needs a launch pad for the same. It has produced 160 first-class cricketers for Mumbai. 14 of them have went on to represent India. Gems like Rohit Sharma, Prithvi Shaw, Wasim Jaffer and Ajinkya Rahane have emerged from Rizvi’s cricketing nursery. The Rizvi Springfield is a school level organisation that helps bring in potential young prodigies who will go on in future and represent Rizvi college in the future. The past two decades of Mumbai’s domestic cricket circuit has been dominated by Rizvi, winning various inter-college tournaments and DSO finals.With a great cricketing system installed in the institution, it won’t be shocking to see more and more Mumbai players in future having their roots in Rizvi.

R.A Poddar College

Before Rizvi’s rise to dominance, R.A. Poddar College was a breeding ground for many young budding sensations who wished to play for Mumbai and India. Beating D.G.Ruparel college in the Inter-College t20 final, Poddar college has made it very clear that they still boast of having huge talents in their squad. This college has produced cricketers like Ravi Shastri and Shreyas Iyer who have gone on and represented the tricolour. They have been giving tough competition to the likes of Rizvi and threaten again to become the dominant force in Mumbai’s college cricket circuit.  

D.G Ruparel College

Although they lost out to eventual winners Poddar college in the final of the RedBull intercollege t20 tournament, Ruparel college shocked one and all when they knocked out favourites Rizvi college in the semi finals. This was shocking as the team mostly consisted of local players and Rizvi were as mighty as always. Defending a modest 125, Rizvi shockingly were bowled out for 95, which no one saw coming. Rishikesh, who was the man of the match,picking up 3 wickets and scoring 17 runs of 10 balls, said that they got a feeling that they were taken lightly by Rizvi. This led to their downfall. This surely has made a clear indication that even Ruparel has a good crop of talent which could go on in the future and represent them at greater levels.

Ruia College

Ruia college was known for its rivalry with Ruparel college in the late 70’s. It has produced one of the most influential Indian captains of all time with the name Ajit Wadekar, who first made India believe that they can win in overseas conditions. Other cricketers like Lalchand Rajput have also grown out of this college setup. Its rivalry with Ruparel has produced many stalwarts for Mumbai and India. With more investment in the youth setup and taking healthy participation in domestic intercollege competitions, Ruia college will likely rise to dominance in the near future.

Xavier’s College

Part of the “Big Five” breeding grounds for Mumbai cricket, Xavier’s college was one of the first colleges to produce top class cricketers. Its rivalry with Siddarth College was the first one of notable importance in the town (South Bombay). Stalwarts like Sunil Gavaskar, probably one of the finest Indian batsman ever, have graced the college by their presence. It has contributed hugely to Mumbai’s dominance in the Ranji Trophy in the late 70’s to the 90’s. The upcoming lot of cricketers are also performing well in the Saqib Rizvi tournament, giving champions Rizvi a run for their money. One will never bet against this college producing another Sunil Gavaskar in the near future.

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