Eight teams competed in the annual NSW Police International Students Cricket Tournament that took place at Doyle Ground, North Parramatta on Sunday.

The tournament is a part of series of events organised by the NSW Police Force to involve and engage International Students in the local community and make them feel welcomed.

“Cricket’s a great sport that has worldwide following, especially in Australia and the Sub-Continent and this event will reinforce relationships within the community” said Detective Superintendent Gavin Dengate, NSW Police Corporate Spokesperson for Safety and Wellbeing of International Students, who feels it is important for International students to feel safe to approach the Police for help.

“Events like these make International students feel welcome but also allow police to build rapport and trust so students can confidently approach them if they ever need help”

The event supported by Cricket NSW saw eight teams competing, all of which were composed of a mix of International students and members of the NSW Police Force. The teams were drawn into two groups, Thunder and Sixers, with the winner of each group qualifying for the 10 over a side Thunder vs Sixers Grand Final.

Player of the Tournament for his all-round heroics, Basit Ali (42 and 1/12) said he is in favour of such community tournaments as a shared love of cricket with Australians helps students from cricket loving nations to connect with the Australian society.

“I came to know about this event from one of my friends, and right away it sounded like a great way to play cricket and to make some new friends in the process. It is a nice idea to bring International Students and Police in one team. Luckily, it was my day and I won the player of the tournament.”

“It will be lovely to see these events being held more often, and I would encourage my friends to take part in future editions,” said Ali.

The Sixers batted first in the final, scoring 101 runs after winning the toss. Thunder looked set to challenge the big target until the third over when they were 2/28 but their chase was derailed. Ali’s spell of 1/12 from 2 overs helped Sixers to curtail the run flow as Thunder lost by 38 runs.