His name is Jamie Harrison.
The Ferndale native is the president of the Maryland Youth Cricket Association and the man to know in the Maryland cricket community.
“I started the Maryland Youth Cricket Association in 2010. Now here we are seven years later and I’m looking out over these fields and seeing what’s become of cricket in Maryland, and how Maryland is leading, Maryland is in the vanguard for cricket in the United States. Yeah there’s a great deal of pride in that,” said Harrison.
Those fields he’s talking about are at the Washington Cricket Center in Laurel. They hosted the Capital Youth Cricket Championship over the weekend. The championship matches took place on Monday. Over 500 kids from 14 teams and six states along the east coast all took part in the action.
“What we see here is the first time we’ve had a major youth cricket tournament happen in the state of Maryland,” said Harrison. “It really is a groundbreaking event.”
One of the teams taking part were the Lutherville-Timonium-Cockeysville Bulldogs 15-and-under club.
“To see all these teams from all these different states join together here in Laurel, it’s just a dream come true because you see how the sport is just growing,” said Bulldogs bowler Raja Herman.
It’s growing in Maryland at warp speed from the grassroots level.
“We have the United States’ only elementary schools competitive cricket program, the only middle schools competitive cricket program and the only state-wide youth cricket championship,” added Harrison.
The sport of cricket is growing so fast here in the state of Maryland that Harrison said he wouldn’t be surprised if within the next five years we see cricket being played at the high school.
“We have hundreds of schools that now have cricket equipment in their physical education classes,” he said. “So, you’re going to see a lot more cricket.”
And that’s the most satisfying thing to the man who calls himself the Johnny Appleseed of the sport in his home state.
“This is my roots and to know that Maryland is now on top of youth cricket in the United States is something I’m very, very proud of.”